The Verizon IndyCar Series recently handed out its season awards at its Victory Lap event in Indianapolis, but IndyCar.com isn’t done doling out special honors.
We’re diving deep into the analytics of the 2018 season to find the drivers and teams that had the best year in a number of categories, according to our data.
Analysis of raw loop data from INDYCAR’s timing and scoring at every track will help us decide the winner of each award. The driver with the most awards will be crowned the Speedy "Driver of the Year."
This week, we’re recognizing the people who help the drivers perform their best on the track: the pit crews.
We know racing isn’t just about the driver – even though the driver gets much of the accolades and glory for winning a race or a championship. It takes a group of people to prepare the car, service it during the race and make the right calls to get to victory lane.
We’ve compiled the season’s top pit crews based on the number of times a pit crew won the Firestone Pit Performance Award this season to name the Pit Crew of the Year.
The finalists are:
No. 9 Chip Ganassi Racing (Scott Dixon)
Known as “The Wolfpack,” Scott Dixon’s crew routinely made up positions for its driver during the early portion of the season when the car struggled for speed. The No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing team won five Firestone Pit Performance Awards during the 2018 season and helped Dixon claim his fifth series title.
No. 12 Team Penske (Will Power)
Will Power’s pit crew celebrated the biggest win of the year at the Indianapolis 500, but also had a solid season away from Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The No. 12 Verizon Team Penske team won five Firestone Pit Performance Awards during the 2018 season, tying Dixon’s team for most this year.
No. 27 Andretti Autosport (Alexander Rossi)
With four Firestone Pit Performance Awards, it’s no surprise to see Alexander Rossi’s No. 27 NAPA AUTO PARTS team was among the best of 2018. The team was instrumental in keeping Rossi at the front as well as his title hopes alive during his late-summer rally.
And the winner of the Speedy as top pit crew is … Scott Dixon’s No. 9 Chip Ganassi Racing crew. Although there was a tie between the Nos. 9 and 12 teams, the Wolfpack takes top honors because it won the season championship and the Indy 500 Pit Stop Challenge in May.
Previous Speedy Awards announced:
Alex Zanardi “Overtaker of the Year” (link: https://www.indycar.com/News/2018/10/10-08-Speedys-Overtaker)
“Closer of the Year” (link: https://www.indycar.com/News/2018/10/10-15-Speedys-Closer)
Tony Kanaan “Restarter of the Year” (link: https://www.indycar.com/News/2018/10/10-22-Speedy-Restart-King)