HVM PDVSA Racing Finishes Sixth at Surfers Paradise
The PDVSA HVM Racing team participated in the Nikon Indy 300 at Surfers Paradise, Queenslad, Australia to conclude their 2008 season. The team's sixth-place finish proved their successful transition to the IndyCar Series.
Rookie pilot, E.J. Viso made his first start on the streets of Surfers Paradise, but was doing so behind the wheel of an HVM machine, and a team that has two wins on the famous beach-side circuit. It didn't take long for Viso to move from his 10th starting position to battle for the top-five. Viso raced with the leaders throughout the first-half of the event, and actually led one lap during the race before pitting for fuel and tires.
Returning to the track, the PDVSA HVM Racing machine was running in the fourth position. IndyCar officials forced Viso to relinquish two positions on separate occasions in the final laps of the event- a cut corner and a blocking penalty were the reasons for the free passes. Viso finished in the sixth position giving him the top rookie honors.
Although a non-championship race that will not count for the championship, the finish gave PDVSA HVM Racing their seventh top-10 finish in 2008. HVM finishes their 2008 season with one top-five and having led 21 laps. The organization will continue to prepare for 2009 when they will expand their race operation into the Firestone Indy Lights Series.
Comments from PDVSA HVM Racing Owner Keith Wiggins after Sunday's Nikon Indy 300:
"We had a good race. I think for E.J.'s first visit to this notoriously difficult track, to finish among the top experienced drivers and by far the best rookie by a mile, it is something he can feel good about.
"The strategy was good and the race went smoothly until the last segment when the officials instructed us to let Tagliani and then Servia past for various reasons. But, we have to live with that and overall it was a good effort by the team and driver."
Comments from PDVSA HVM Racing Driver E.J. Viso after Sunday's Nikon Indy 300:
"I am happy about the race. I am disappointed about the penalty with Servia, after he hit me, but in that last stint he was faster than me as my brakes started to wear.
"It has been a good season for us, especially as a new driver in a new series for the team, starting so late and yet mostly ahead of established teams. I want to thank the team, all my sponsors and all involved for 2009."