The last time race engineer Brad Goldberg visited victory lane in the NTT IndyCar Series, it was 2013 at Mid-Ohio as his driver Charlie Kimball made exceptional speed with a three-stop strategy–one more than the others–to secure his first win.
Goldberg celebrated his second IndyCar win on Saturday with another first-timer in Marcus Ericsson, who made use of an ill-timed red flag that spoiled Will Power’s plans for winning and saw the ex-Formula 1 veteran achieve his dreams of returning to the win column.
And in what felt like some kind of cosmic balancing, the Swede—among the unluckiest drivers since joining the series in 2019—took the win after the cartoon anvil fell on a car that didn’t have his name on it.
“We were just joking, like, ‘Hey, did we just have some luck?’” Goldberg told RACER. “It feels great. I’m most happy for Marcus for all the hard effort he’s put in. I had a few victories on the GT side of things, but I love IndyCar and the competition here. Almost anyone can win.
“And for Marcus to win, most people don’t see at how hard he works; he’s calling me at 11 at night, and texting me, and reviewing data and sector reports every night and is always trying to get better. He pushes the team so hard. He pushes me. He gets us out to dinner and asks everyone what he can do better. He reviews pit stop footage to see how he can do better for the crew. He’s tireless.”
Goldberg headed to CGR’s new Ford GT IMSA program in 2016, and in what has become a habit, he oversaw the team and brand’s first victory in the GT Le Mans category as well. In returning to IndyCar after the Ford factory effort concluded, Goldberg was paired with Ericsson when he arrived at CGR in 2020 and together, the two have shown immense promise, but prior to Saturday in Detroit, misfortune was the central theme for the No. 8 Honda.
“Just two weeks ago, the yellow at Indy hurt us, and we had some poor luck at Texas, and there’s been many times where it’s just bad luck or a mis-timed yellow,” he said. “Even our first race together last year at Texas, we had a $1 O-ring on a fuel probe fail and all of the fuel pours out. The second race at Gateway was a mechanical problem that took him out for no fault of his own.
“And it’s so many other little things where you’re wondering if we’re going to catch a break. It’s like a big exhale for all of us, and most of all, for Marcus. This is why drivers come over from Formula 1 to IndyCar, because of this possibility to win. We feel terrible, truly terrible for what happened to Will [Power] because we’ve lost a lot of good results to the same kind of freak happenings. For once, it wasn’t us.”