Dorricott Racing Nazareth Race Report

DORRICOTT RACING PLACES TWO ON NAZARETH PODIUM; SERVIA AND MEARS FINISH SECOND AND THIRD PLACE NAZARETH, Pa. (May 2, 1999) - Dorricott Racing was clearly the prevailing team in round three of the 12-race PPG-Dayton Indy ...

DORRICOTT RACING PLACES TWO ON NAZARETH PODIUM; SERVIA AND MEARS FINISH SECOND AND THIRD PLACE

NAZARETH, Pa. (May 2, 1999) - Dorricott Racing was clearly the prevailing team in round three of the 12-race PPG-Dayton Indy Lights Championship as drivers Oriol Servia and Casey Mears claimed second and third place, respectively, and Philipp Peter scored an eighth place finish, Sunday, May 2, in the Bosch Spark Grand Prix, presented by Toyota, at Nazareth Speedway. Servia, of Pals, Catalonia, Spain, started from the pole with a qualifying time of 0:22.233 = 153.178 mph and was firmly in the lead until lap 15 of the 100-lap, 94.6-mile Indy Lights sprint. Slower cars in the rear of the field failed to heed commands from flagmen that a faster car (Servia) was approaching. Meanwhile, outside polesitter Airton Dare, of Brazil, was able to sneak around the "backmarkers" and slip past Servia's Catalonia/RACC/Elf Lola.. Servia quickly recovered and hugged Dare for the remainder of the race, but similar circumstances didn't repeat. Dare crossed the finish line 0.437-seconds ahead of Servia at a record average speed of 122.107 mph. "Dare passed me on lap 15 when we came up on our first traffic," said Servia. "The cars ahead of me weren't paying attention to the flags and blocked me out. I lost my momentum. Meanwhile, Airton (Dare) was able to slip around me when he found a clean line that wasn't being blocked. "I had another chance to pass Airton near the end of the race. I saw him touch wheels with someone else and I thought he might hit the wall. My car had the inside line but there wasn't any clean way around the slower cars." Two cautions interrupted the race. Its start was waved off for a misaligned field. A second caution was issued on lap 34 when Felipe Giaffone spun at the exit of turn two and struck the outside wall. Giaffone was uninjured but 11 laps were lost to track clean-up. Mears continued his three-race string of top-five finishes with third place. Mears, of Bakersfield, Calif., started third and never fell below fourth place. Giaffone passed Mears on lap seven, but Mears regained the spot following Giaffone's folly on lap 34. Mears was thereafter unchallenged, and even piloted the Sooner Trailer/American Custom Racing Wheels Lola to the race's fastest lap on lap 59 at 0:23.135 = 147.206 mph. Mears opened the season with a fifth place finish at Homestead. He also finished fifth place at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. "I'm a little disappointed because I went into the race expecting a better finish," said Mears. "In the same respect, I'm excited to finish on the podium and with the team's results for Dorricott Racing. "The traffic was worse than we thought. It was better for me when Oriol (Servia) was close behind Dare because it made for more stable air behind Oriol. The lapped traffic helped me at the end the race. The fact we caught up and ran tight with the two front-runners shows we can be competitive and get the job done." Peter, who started 10th, ran a stable and uneventful race in finishing eighth place in the Red Bull/Remus/ESTEBE/Chicco d' Oro Lola. "I went into this race with a goal to score points and that was accomplished," said Peter. "I battled a push in the car at the start of the race, but otherwise the car ran well. I had to adjust the car against the push on the re-starts but I was a little low on tire pressure so I had to be careful not to run high and into the wall. I lost time and then I lost more time when I got caught in traffic. I fell out of the draft with Chris Menninga and David Pook and that was pretty much it. I'm not happy but I'm not depressed either. The race results are what they are and the points I scored will be important over the span of the year. It's shaping up to be a close championship." Mears' third place finish is his second consecutive third place showing at Nazareth - both career best Indy Lights finishes - and moves him into third place in the driver's championship with 34 points. Servia, who scored 17 points including one bonus point for winning the pole and 16 points for being race runner-up, moved into fifth place with 26 points. Peter, who won at Long Beach in round two, is right behind Servia in sixth place with 25 points. The next stop for Dorricott Racing will be round four at the Milwaukee Mile on the Wisconsin State Fairgrounds, Sunday, June 6.

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Series Indy Lights
Drivers Casey Mears , Airton Daré , Oriol Servia , Philipp Peter