INDIANAPOLIS — The July highlights for Tyler Reddick already included earning his first NASCAR Cup Series win, qualifying for the playoffs and signing a big contract with a new team.
Now he has a victory at iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Reddick closed the best month of his career with an overtime win Sunday on the road course at IMS to give him two victories in the past five races.
"I watched a lot of racing at this venue when I was a kid growing up," the 26-year-old said. "A lot of incredible drivers have won at this race track, and it's really cool to be part of the drivers who have won here and I'm really happy about it."
Reddick earned his first Cup Series win July 3 at Road America in Wisconsin, then announced nine days later he was leaving Richard Childress Racing in 2024 to drive for 23XI, the team owned by basketball legend Michael Jordan and Joe Gibbs Racing driver Denny Hamlin.
Reddick was comfortably out front for 15 late laps Sunday when debris from Christopher Bell's JGR Toyota brought out the fourth caution of the race with six laps to go on the 14-turn, 2.439-mile layout. It set up a restart with three laps remaining and Reddick lined up alongside road course ace Chase Elliott, who briefly got past Reddick for the lead until his Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet was spun for another caution that sent the race into overtime.
Reddick on the next restart had to hold off AJ Allmendinger, who won last year's Cup Series race on the course and also won Saturday in the second-tier Xfinity Series. But Allmendinger was physically exhausted and struggling because his cooling device had not worked the entire race, and he hardly challenged Reddick at all.
Allmendinger collapsed when he climbed from his car. His wife and team personnel were seen draping his head in wet towels and dumping water over him before Allmendinger was taken to the care center.
So it was Ross Chastain who made Reddick claw his way to the Yard of Bricks.
Chastain missed the first turn completely and used the access road to return to the course ahead of Reddick and the apparent new leader. Reddick chased him for an entire lap around the course and was back out front in time to lead the entire final lap.
"I couldn't believe he got ahead of me," Reddick said. "I was kind of waiting to see if he was going to have a penalty because I didn't want to move him out of the way and make his race worse than what it was. But hey, we made it work. Hats off to Ross for trying to do that, but really glad it didn't end up working out because I'd have been pretty (angry)."
After the race, NASCAR penalized Chastain for using the access road, which dropped him to 27th.
"I thought we were four wide and couldn't go any farther right," said Chastain, "and decided to take the NASCAR access lane out there."
Reddick's win made him the first RCR driver since Kevin Harvick in 2013 to win multiple races in a season, and it clinched multiple victories for RCR in a season for the first time since 2017.
It was RCR's fourth win at Indianapolis as Reddick joined Dale Earnhardt, Kevin Harvick and Paul Menard as Indy winners for Richard Childress. The previous three wins were on the Brickyard's oval.
However, Childress still seemed chapped by Reddick's early decision to leave in 18 months, specifically citing his cordial split with Harvick at the end of the 2013 season to join Stewart-Haas Racing.
"Well, Kevin and I talked through his whole deal and we made a joint announcement. He won four races that year, and we almost won the championship," Childress said. "This one didn't happen like that."
But the car owner said he'd still celebrate with Reddick and his sponsors, and he later was alongside Reddick for the customary celebration of kissing the yard of bricks.
"I'll congratulate him. I'll congratulate the whole team," Childress said. "The whole team did a great job. I'll congratulate our sponsors."
Austin Cindric, who drives for track owner Roger Penske, finished second in a Ford and was followed by fellow rookie Harrison Burton, who was a career-best third for Wood Brothers Racing. The No. 21 Ford that Burton drives is an offshoot of Team Penske.
Front Row Motorsports' Todd Gilliland was fourth for his career-best finish, and the rookie led a Cup Series lap for the first time when he was out front for four in the final stage.
Bubba Wallace was fifth for 23XI and followed by Joey Logano of Penske and finally Allmendinger, who dropped to seventh on the overtime restart. FRM's Michael McDowell was eighth and followed by Cole Custer of SHR and Chris Buescher of RFK Racing as Ford drivers took seven of the top 10 spots in a race won by a Chevy.
Chevrolet has now won 10 straight Cup Series races on road courses win since the manufacturer's 2021 milestone 800th win at Circuit of The Americas.
Hendrick Motorsports' Kyle Larson had a lousy 30th birthday with a long Sunday at Indianapolis that ended with a frightening crash in which the brakes on his Chevy appeared to fail.
The reigning Cup Series champion was already five laps down because of an early flat tire. His day ended early when he seemed to have no ability to slow his car as he sailed into a turn and directly into the side of Ty Dillon's car at full speed.
The hit destroyed Dillon's car. Once Larson was out of his own car, he jogged over to Dillon to check on him.
"All I saw was a blue flash," Dillon said. "That's the hardest I've ever been hit."
Larson declined comment as he exited the infield care center.
NASCAR races Sunday at Michigan International Speedway, the opener for the final four-week stretch of the regular season to finalize the playoff field.
F1: Verstappen again
BUDAPEST, Hungary — Reigning Formula One champion Max Verstappen overcame a spin and his worst starting spot of the season to win the Hungarian Grand Prix, with his eighth victory of the season pushing his lead to 80 points over Ferrari's Charles Leclerc as the series heads into its midseason break.
Even though his advantage keeps increasing, Verstappen is not thinking ahead.
"It's of course a great lead," the Red Bull driver said. "But if you want to fight for championships, you can't afford many mistakes."
Mercedes placed both its cars on the podium for the second straight race; seven-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton carved his way from seventh to a second-place finish, and teammate and George Russell was third after starting in pole position.
Carlos Sainz Jr. was fourth in another disastrous day for Ferrari. Leclerc was sixth, one spot behind Sergio Perez of Red Bull.
Verstappen's eighth win of the season was the 28th of the Dutchman's career.
"Who would have thought when we woke up today we'd get this result? Amazing," Verstappen told his team, letting out a laugh. "I was battling a lot of guys and it was a lot of fun out there. That was a crazy race, but stayed calm and we won."
He qualified a season-worst 10th because of a loss of power Saturday, then in Sunday's race did a 360-degree spin.
"Unbelievable Max, that is right up there with your best," Red Bull team principal Christian Horner replied. "Fantastic."
Russell, who started from the pole for the first time in his career, led 30 laps until Leclerc passed him on the outside as dark clouds rolled over the Hungaroring circuit and a light rain began to fall.
With Leclerc leading, Verstappen undercut for quicker tires. Ferrari made a mistake in choosing the more durable hard tires for Leclerc.
"These tires are (expletive)," Leclerc said.
He later explained that he thought it was the wrong call.
"I made it clear that I wanted to keep (the medium tire) as long as possible, but we pitted very early for the hard, which we need to understand why. I think stopping for the hard was the turning point," Leclerc said. "Before thinking about the championship, to be honest, as a team we need to understand what we need to do to get better. Because otherwise it's going to be really difficult."
Moments later, Verstappen lost grip and spun on track, allowing Sainz to take the lead from Hamilton. Leclerc passed Verstappen, only to lose position soon after because Verstappen had faster tires.
"It was very tricky conditions out there but we had a really good strategy," Verstappen said. "We were really reactive, always pitting at the right time. Even with the 360 we still won."
Recalling the spin, Verstappen said: "I went on throttle and completely lost the rear, it caught me out."
Ferrari's strategy woes just won't go away. Leclerc has experience two nearly certain wins disappear — at the Monaco GP and the British GP — after team calls dropped him down from a dominant position into fourth place.
Ferrari botched Sainz's next tire stop on the 47th lap Sunday, taking too long to fit his rear left tire.
"It always feels like there's always something going on, reliability, mistakes, whatever," a clearly frustrated Leclerc said.
Hamilton stayed out but was losing time to Verstappen as the rain increased.
Leclerc, who crashed when leading the French Grand Prix the week before, came in for a third tire change on the 55th lap.
Ferrari's strategy calls even confused Verstappen.
"I think Ferrari chose their wrong tires in their final stint before they pitted again," Verstappen said. "Ferrari was very fast, they just made the wrong call with the hard tire."