Early Race Contact Leaves Vitor in 17th Place in Detroit GP Panther Fixes Broken Pushrod, Picks Up Valuable Positions Late in Event DETROIT, Mich. (August 31, 2008) -- Panther Racing driver Vitor Meira suffered a broken push rod adjuster in...
Early Race Contact Leaves Vitor in 17th Place in Detroit GP
Panther Fixes Broken Pushrod, Picks Up Valuable Positions Late in Event
DETROIT, Mich. (August 31, 2008) -- Panther Racing driver Vitor Meira suffered a broken push rod adjuster in an incident with Danica Patrick Sunday during the early stages of the Detroit Grand Prix and finished 17th after his Delphi National Guard team made repairs so he could complete the race.
Panther also fell one spot in the IndyCar Series championship, and is currently in 12th position. Vitor and his team can still climb into the top ten with a solid performance next weekend at Chicagoland Speedway.
Meira started 14th and moved past Marco Andretti at the start of the race to claim 13th position. He had advanced another position before the first caution period on Lap 18 and elected not to pit while several other cars made the trip to pit lane. Then several laps after the restart, as both Meira and Graham Rahal chased the slower Danica Patrick, both drivers attempted to pass the Andretti Green Racing driver as the trio entered a turn. Rahal made it through cleanly but Patrick and Meira made light contact, which broke a pushrod adjuster on the No. 4 car.
Vitor was able to limp his Delphi National Guard Honda back to pit lane, where the Panther crew rapidly replaced the damage. Despite losing just four laps to repair the damage, Meira was able to make up several positions as the race proceeded when other competitors ran into problems and dropped out of the race.
The IndyCar Series will travel to Chicagoland Speedway this weekend for the PEAK Antifreeze and Motor Oil Indy 300. The race will be broadcast live Sunday, September 7th on ABC at 3:30 p.m. (ET) with additional coverage provided by the IMS Radio Network and IMS Radio Channels 144 and 145.
Vitor Meira, No. 4 Delphi National Guard Honda Dallara:
"Today was a difficult day for everybody. The Delphi National Guard car was running well for most of the day. We just needed a break and it didn't come. We didn't get a break in qualifications and we didn't get one today. The hard work the guys put in today after the incident is what we'll celebrate from this weekend. The Panther crew never gives up, and they've worked so hard for me this year. We've already moved our focus to Chicago and we know the No. 4 car is going to be good there."