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Race Recap: Indy Lights and Pro Mazda at Gateway Motorsports Park and F1600 at Summit Point

Juan Piedrahita

No. 2 Polipetrosur Team Pelfrey Mazda

Race 1: Qualified 1st / Finished 2nd  

 

  • Juan Piedrahita set the new Gateway Motorsports Park Indy Lights track record with an average lap speed of 160.823 mph, which also marks his first series pole position.

  • The Colombian had a stellar battle with Santi Urruita after leading 44 laps.  However, Urruita overtook the No. 2 Polipetrosur machine on the final lap ultimately paving the way for Piedrahita to score his best career finish in second.

“It was a great weekend for us at Gateway! 100% of the credit goes to the guys who work so hard every day on giving me a great car. It was great feeling to get the pole and come so close to winning the race. Overall, I am very happy with this weekend’s result.”

 

Nikita Lastochkin

No. 80 Russkaya Mekhanika Team Pelfrey Mazda

Race 1: Qualified 5th / Finished 6th

  • The 27-year-old Russian had a consistent drive throughout the 54-lap event as he slotted behind teammates Carlos Cunha and TJ Fischer for most of the feature, before being overtaken by Jeff Green in the closing stages resulting in a sixth-place result.

  • Lastochkin marked his tenth top-ten finish at Gateway Motorsports Park.

“Overall, I was happy with experience that I learned and gained a lot of confidence of running on an oval. We had perhaps a bit too much drag compared to the other teams running upfront, but I was happy with what I learned this weekend.”

 

TJ Fischer

No. 82 Project 02 Team Pelfrey Mazda

Race 1: Qualified 3rd / Finished 4th

  • Despite being last to qualify, TJ Fischer had a two-lap average of 135.798 mph placing himself on the inside of the second row alongside teammate Carlos Cunha for the first, and only, Pro Mazda oval race of the 2017 season.

  • Fischer continued to show pace as he progressed throughout the weekend collecting a fourth-place finish.

“Our first oval experience in the #82 Project O2/#Race2TheRescue Team Pelfrey machine was awesome. Gateway Motorsports Park put on an awesome show and made a butter smooth track that was super fast. After a 14-year hiatus, the St. Louis fans jam packed the house which was awesome to see such a great fan base after so long! We had good pace in my first ever oval qualifying experience with P3 and the race we brought home a solid P4. All in all, very happy with learning ovals and now we rock it to the end of the season at the Glen. Thanks to Team Pelfrey, Propeller Health and the rest of my partners that helped me along our journey so far.”

 

Carlos Cunha

No. 81 Team Pelfrey Mazda

Race 1: Qualified 4th / Finished 3rd
 

  • The 17-year-old Brazilian showed a strong performance on his first career oval race as he passed teammate TJ Fischer on the opening lap, ultimately putting himself in Victor Franzoni’s rearview mirror for the remainder of the 54-lap contest.

  • Carlos Cunha rounded out the podium, collecting his fourth podium finish of his debut Mazda Road to Indy season.

“It was a really good weekend, I learned a lot and enjoyed racing on an oval. It was my first time and it was really cool and even scary sometimes! We were strong since we had a test here a few weeks ago and we kept improving. I made a small mistake in qualifying by not reading the changing track correctly, but then I reset my mindset for the race and got stronger every lap. On ovals, we need to be respectful with the limits and I drove the car on the limit the whole time, we had a third-place car and that's what I brought home. A solid podium in my first ever oval race was not bad. Team Pelfrey did an incredible job again and I just need to say thanks to all my guys there. Now it's maximum focus for the last round, I think I will adapt well to Watkins Glen. As a team, we are improving non-stop and we want to finish the season strong!”

 

Matthew Cowley

No. 80 Cardio Wall Team Pelfrey Mygale

Race 1: Qualified 1st / Finished 1st

Race 2: Qualified 3rd / Finished 3rd

Race 3: Qualified 3rd/ Finished 2nd

 

“It was a strong weekend for Team Pelfrey. I managed to show great pace which resulted in three podium finishes. Big thanks goes to the team for providing me with a great car as usual.”

 

Jonathan Kotyk

No. 81 Gap Guard Team Pelfrey Mygale

Race 1: Qualified 4th / Finished 3rd

Race 2: Qualified 5th / Finished 4th

Race 3: Qualified 4th / Finished 4th

 

“It was a tough battle each race. Despite missing out on the top step, I enjoyed being behind the wheel. It was good to lead some laps in my Team Pelfrey / Gap Guard car and bring home a podium in race one. I’m looking forward in taking what I learned from this race into the series finale at New Jersey. I can't thank everyone enough for their support.”

 

David Osborne

No. 82 Trinity Karting Group Team Pelfrey Mygale

Race 1: Qualified 3rd / Finished 5th

Race 2: Qualified 2nd / Finished 5th

Race 3: Qualified 5th / Finished 5th

 

"It's a shame I didn't come away from this weekend with better results. We started off the weekend strong posting quick laps in practice and qualifying, but ultimately losing pace in the races. In the end, I learned as much as I could and look forward to applying it to the finale in New Jersey."

 

Team Pelfrey’s F1600 team will travel to New Jersey Motorsports Park on October 6-8 for the season finale as the Mazda Road to Indy ladder series will travel to Watkins Glen International on September 1-3 for the final rounds of the championship. For media inquiries contact Chelsea Timmerman at ct@coforce.com or follow @TeamPelfrey on social media.

 

 

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