West Allis, WISCONSIN (June 16, 2012) – Coming off a win for one and a career best finish for the other, both Dale Coyne Racing drivers arrived at the Milwaukee IndyFest with high hopes and a determination to repeat their weekend in Texas. However, circumstances out of the team and drivers’ control put an end to Justin Wilson’s and James Jakes’ day much earlier than they would have liked.
The weekend started off on the same note as the climactic weekend before, as Wilson narrowly missed capturing the pole position for the Milwaukee IndyFest and ultimately qualified second. Both cars posted practice times consistently in the top-ten.
Due to an unscheduled engine change, Wilson and the No. 18 Sonny’s Bar-B-Q Honda had a grid-spot reduction for the start of today’s race and started in 12th position. Jakes and his No. 19 Boy Scouts of America Honda started the race in 16th position.
Wilson was moving up through the field quickly until a puff of smoke gave way to fire in the engine area of the car on Lap 93, forcing him out of the car.
“Disappointing end to the day,” said Wilson. “We had a good race car and we were making good progress moving ahead during that first stint, picking guys off one by one. Then we got caught out with that yellow and after that we were trying to come back through the field. I was still able to pass guys, so I’m just disappointed that we’re out of the race. I thought we had a great race car, and a great chance for picking up some good points today. “
Jakes was working his way steadily through the field until Takuma Sato lost control of his car and ran Jakes into the wall on Lap 107.
“Just an unfortunate end to the race,” said Jakes. “We went a lap down early on, but were making great progress to get the lap back when Takuma took us out. I feel bad for the guys on the team, they’ve put a lot of work into giving me a great car to drive. They’ve got a lot of work to do now, but I know they can get it done so we’re ready to rock and roll in Iowa.”