Year 2001: For his third year in the Dayton Indy Lights series, owned by CART, Mario signed one day before the start of the season with PacWest Lights. His teammate is Dan Wheldon, Toyota Atlantic series runner up in 2000.
Monterrey 4/4 (circuit)
Long Beach 1/4 (street)
Texas 6/6 (oval)
Milwaukee 6/2 (oval)
Portland 5/11* (circuit)
Kansas 1/10* (oval)
Toronto 2/2 (street)
Mid Ohio (circuit)
Laguna Seca (circuit)
This year Mario was negotiating with CART team Forsythe/Zakspeed Racing before choosing to return to Indy Lights with champion team PacWest Lights. Has two pole positions (PP) in the season, Long Beach and Kansas, showing his versatility, and has not started behind the third row all year long. Currently fourth with 71 points with 5 races to run.
Year 2000: Run his second season in Indy Lights with Mexican team GO-México-Herdez-Quaker, finishes eight in the standings with 67 points.
Long Beach 7/10
Detroit 6/5 (circuit)
Chicago 15/11 (oval)
Vancouver 6/5 (street)
Laguna Seca 12/10
Houston 9/12* (Street)
Ran second full season in Indy Lights in 2000 as the number one driver for team GO-Mexico-Herdez-Quaker having a new teammate in Luis Díaz. Scored points at every race until the California finale when his teammate crashed with him after contact with Felipe Giaffone. Scored a season's best third-place finish at Milwaukee after qualifying fifth, also his best qualifying effort. Improved 11 positions and won the Dayton Move to the Front Award at Michigan.
Year 1999: Races in his first full season at the Indy Lights series with the Mexican team GO. Finishes eleventh in the championship with 66 points and ends third in the Rookie of the Year standings.
Long Beach 17/6
Nazareth 7/17* (oval)
Cleveland 17/9 (airport)
Toronto 6/20* (street)
Laguna Seca 6/16*
Teammate of veteran irish driver Derek Higgins, Mario was the only driver to finish in the top five at both superspeedway races. Won from the pole (first PP too) in his first race on oval at Homestead. Comes from 17th to sixth at Long Beach to win the Move to the Front Award and becomes the first mexican driver since Adrián Fernández to lead the series.
1998: Mexican Formula 3 champion with 6 wins (Saltillo, Pachuca, Zacatecas, Monterrey, Atizapán and Guadalajara) and 6 PPs running for the Herdez Competition Team. Runs two year-end races in the Indy Lights series, Vancouver (start 19, finish 14) and Laguna Seca (14/7), with Mexican team GO and signs for 1999 on strength of his showings.
1997: Third in the Mexican Formula 3000 championship, with 2 wins in the tracks of Mexico City and Guadalajara.
1996: Third in the Mexican Formula 3000 championship with one win at Zacatecas. Also runs in the Mexican Formula 3 series getting two wins at the beginning of the year before focusing in the F3000; he leaves the F3 while leading the standings.
1995: Third in the Mexican Formula 3 with two wins, Pachuca and Guadalajara. Fourth in the Mexican Prototype Cup (C2), with one win at Guadalajara.
1994: Runs in the National Nissan Formula winning at Monterrey and Mexico City.
1993: Runs four races in the National Formula.
1992: Champion in the US Formula Russell Mazda, 9 wins in 12 races. This brings about his debut in the Indy Lights series, at 17 years of age, with Brian Stewart Racing team at Laguna Seca where he qualifies eight and runs fifth when he has to retire.
1991: Mexican karting champion. Runs at the world karting championship in France.
1990: Mexican karting champion. Runs at the world karting championship in Italy.
1989: Mexican karting champion. Runs at the world karting championship in Spain.
1987/88 Starts racing karts in Mexico.
Indy Lights: Career Starts: 34
Best Career Finish: 1st - Miami 1999
Best Career Start: 1st - Miami 1999; Long Beach 2001; Kansas 2001