Danial Frost claimed his maiden Indy Lights victory after championship leader Linus Lundqvist and Christian Rasmussen tangled early on.
Despite the incident forcing him to pit, Lundqvist ended the day top of the championship standings, albeit with just six points separating him and Frost.
Rasmussen got the best start out of the top four, passing McElrea at the first corner and trying to get alongside Lundqvist. Lundqvist held on at turn one, but it was just three laps before a move around the outside of turn six earned Rasmussen the lead.
Lundqvist stuck with Rasmussen and not long after tried to reclaim the position with a lunge down the inside at turn two. The pair made contact, with Rassmussen sent into a spin, and both cars suffered damage.
McElrea, who had held off Frost on the opening lap, moved into the race lead as a full course yellow was called. Frost was close behind the race leader when the green flags were shown and it wasn’t long before he swept past the Andretti run driver.
McElrea stuck with Frost for a number of laps but Frost gradually extended a lead. At one point he was more than two seconds ahead of the rest of the field, but McElrea was able to draw back to just 1.544s behind at the chequered flag.
Meanwhile, both Lundqvist and Rasmussen were forced to pit after their incident. Rasmussen had the advantage after the pit stops but together they gradually climbed back up through the order.
In the closing stages of the race they had made it up to fifth and sixth, but became stuck behind Antonio Serravalle. Serravalle put up a good defence and allowed the podium sitters to pull out of catching distance. Eventually Rasmussen was able to find a way past the new HMD Motorsports driver, with Lundqvist following him past not long after.
The pair ran out of laps before they could close in on Sting Ray Robb, who held on to take his second podium finish of the season.
Robb had been promoted into the podium position after Matt Brabham and Benjamin Pedersen came together while battling for third. Brabham tried a move past Pedersen, only to lock up and make slight contact with him instead. Pedersen was sent into a spin and Brabham dropped back behind Robb. Brabham would then be handed a penalty which dropped him to the back of the field.
Neither Pedersen nor Brabham could climb up through the order as Rasmussen and Lundqvist had. Brabham finished 10th, with Pedersen 1.7s back in P11.
Serravalle came under pressure from Christian Bogle late on. Bogle had already run out of push to pass, though, and couldn’t find a way past Sarravalle. The pair were seperated by just 0.8s at the chequered flag. Jacob Abel took eighth ahead of Ernie Francis Jr.
Race results (35 laps)
|1||Danial Frost||HMD Motorsports||47m28.6831s|
|2||Hunter McElrea||Andretti Autosport||+1.5449s|
|3||Sting Ray Robb||Andretti Autosport||+3.3539s|
|4||Christian Rasmussen||Andretti Autosport||+9.1499s|
|5||Linus Lundqvist||HMD Motorsports||+10.9835s|
|6||Antonio Serravalle||HMD Motorsports||+20.2883s|
|7||Christian Bogle||HMD Motorsports||+21.1478s|
|8||Jacob Abel||Abel Motorsports||+26.3739s|
|9||Ernie Francis Jr||Force Indy||+28.8987s|
|10||Matthew Brabham||Andretti Autosport||+30.4664s|
|11||Benjamin Pedersen||Global Racing Group w/ HMD||+32.2380s|
|12||Kyffin Simpson||TJ Speed||+34.3302s|
|13||James Roe||TJ Speed||+39.9779s|
|14||Ryan Phinny||Abel Motorsports||+58.4364s|
|Fastest lap: Lundqvist, 1m17.4895s