Rare mistake costs Justin a podium at Edmonton Justin recovered from a spin to finish 4th at Edmonton, in a race where he was on course for his second podium in as many weeks. He was running in 2nd, behind team-mate A.J. Allmendinger, at the end...
Rare mistake costs Justin a podium at Edmonton
Justin recovered from a spin to finish 4th at Edmonton, in a race where he was on course for his second podium in as many weeks. He was running in 2nd, behind team-mate A.J. Allmendinger, at the end of a full course yellow period when he lost control of the car at Turn 3 trying to get heat into the tyres before the restart. In the final laps of the race, Justin made a spirited recovery and was chasing Paul Tracy hard for 3rd at the chequered flag. Worse luck befell A.J. who glanced a wall and broke his suspension while leading the race. The race was won by Sebastien Bourdais, with Oriol Servia and Paul Tracy making up the rest of the podium.
It was a bitterly disappointing result for RuSPORT, with the team at one point looking good for its first 1-2 of the season and putting on a sterling show for the capacity crowd. Up to the first stops on lap 27, A.J. was in the lead, followed by Paul Tracy who had got past Justin at Turn 1 on the opening lap. Justin short-fuelled to emerge in 2nd, a whisker in front of A.J. down the pitlane, and he relentlessly hounded Tracy before snatching the lead on lap 49. A.J. got by Tracy a lap later and the RuSPORT pair were running 1-2. Because of his tighter fuel strategy, Justin had to pit earlier than the others on lap 53. He re-emerged after the stop in 2nd, behind A.J., but with a challenging fuel conservation target to make it to the end without a splash-and-go. With the full course yellow for Bjorn Wirdheim on lap 76 it looked as if A.J. and Justin would bring home a double podium, before their day fell apart in the closing stages.
Naturally, Justin was gutted at losing out on a podium that was his for the taking. "I'm not sure what happened when I spun. I gave a flip of the throttle to warm up the tires, but the car started turning and kept going. Then, obviously no one wanted to let me back in. It's so disappointing--I can't believe it. The CDW car was set for a 2nd place, maybe a win, but definitely a RuSPORT 1-2. I'm so sorry for them and for my team because the car has just been fantastic all weekend and we had some really great racing with Paul (Tracy) to come out ahead. The only positive, really, is that the Edmonton fans got a great race and we pulled out some valuable points."