Patricio O'Ward is the 2018 Indy Lights champion
The 19-year-old Mexican Patricio ‘Pato’ O’Ward is the 2018 Indy Lights champion. Andretti Autosport’s driver has won the penultimate race of the season on Saturday at Portland International Raceway and secured enough points to take the title with one more race to go on Sunday. O’Ward earned a scholarship valued at $1M to guarantee entry into three IndyCar Series races in 2019, including the Indianapolis 500.
O’Ward took his eighth win of the season ahead of Colton Herta (Andretti-Steinbrenner Racing). Brazilian Victor Franzoni (Juncos Racing) completed the podium. Ahead of the last race of the season, O’Ward holds a 32-point advantage over Colton Herta.
“I was screaming in the car! You work for it all year, so many months of just hard work and focus, and finally, all that weight is off my shoulders. I knew it would be a battle with Colton today, and I had to beat him because that’s the only way you can be a champion. My pass on him was pretty much the same pass he did on me; he just didn’t give me as much room as I gave him. It was hard racing: we both want to win. I knew I had the car and I just had to get around him. It’s been this way all year, just hard-fought races. We have been pushing each other so hard, and IndyCar owners have realized that. Hopefully, you’ll see us both in IndyCar next year!
But it’s been a dream season – so many wins, so many poles, and the car has been an absolute bullet. I can’t thank Andretti Autosport enough for making this happen. I’m going to sleep like a baby tonight,” Pato O’Ward said.
On Sunday, O’Ward confirmed his domination in the Indy Lights series by scoring one more victory. He won the 35-lap race with 7.7855sec advantage over Aaron Telitz. Santi Urrutia completed a podium.
Photos: Indy Lights,