Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Has Ups and Downs in Long Beach
Long Beach, CA (April 19, 2009)- Dreyer & Reinbold Racing had some ups and downs for the second round of the IndyCar Series at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. The team showed consistent speed all weekend long, but time and traffic didn't help them early on in qualifying as Mike Conway, pilot of the No. 24 Dad's Root Beer machine and Darren Manning driver of the other DRR car, both qualified 16th and 18th respectively for the race.
As the green flag dropped, both Manning and Conway were off to a very good start. They had a clean first lap and immediately went into fuel conservation mode. The twelve laps were problem free and then the story began to change.
Rookie Mike Conway was taking advantage of his opportunity, as he gained positions and was running well. Things started to turn for the Brit on lap 12 when the AGS (assisted gearshift system) was malfunctioning from that point on. This made the car difficult to drive as the shifting was inconsistent, which finally caught Conway out. As a result, it ended his race.
It was a similar story for Conway's teammate, Manning. The 33 year-old had a clean first lap, and was driving a steady race. On lap 22, the Brit was in the wrong place at the wrong time when he got collected in the five car pile up, running into the back of Hideki Mutoh. He came in on lap 24, replaced his front nose, changed tires and refueled. Unfortunately the incident put Manning a lap down as he finished 16th for the race.
Dreyer & Reinbold Racing heads back to Indianapolis and then onto Kansas for the third round of the IndyCar Series season. The team will hit the pavement April 26th for the Road Runner Turbo Indy 300.
What they have to say...
Mike Conway: "Today was a really tough race. In the beginning we were fine and were making up positions keeping with the guys ahead. We were saving fuel and then we started having issues with the electronic shift assist and unfortunately, that's what ended my day early. Now, we just have to put this race behind us and move onto Kansas."
Darren Manning: "It's a bit of shame that we got caught up in that mess in the hairpin. I had nowhere to go and ended up underneath the rear wheels of Hideki Mutoh. We were definitely quick enough. It was unfortunate to be a lap down, because we had the speed and could have definitely been in the top ten."
Dennis Reinbold: "We are a little disappointed. Our cars were quick most of the weekend and we know that there was more in the cars. We will just move on and prepare for Kansas."