Mid-Ohio: Andersen Racing qualifying report

Andersen Racing's Vilarinho Qualifies 15th For Mid-Ohio Firestone Indy Lights Race LEXINGTON, Ohio, Aug. 7 - Giancarlo Vilarinho of Sao Paulo, Brazil will start 15th in his first Firestone Indy Lights race Sunday at 12:45 p.m. at the Mid-Ohio ...

Andersen Racing's Vilarinho Qualifies 15th For Mid-Ohio Firestone Indy Lights Race

LEXINGTON, Ohio, Aug. 7 - Giancarlo Vilarinho of Sao Paulo, Brazil will start 15th in his first Firestone Indy Lights race Sunday at 12:45 p.m. at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. He qualified in that position Saturday morning in the Andersen Racing No. 4 with a time of 1:18.0560 and an average speed of 104.141 miles per hour for the 2.258-mile, 13-turn road course.

Vilarinho finished second in the Formula BMW USA series in 2009, winning seven of 14 races. He competed in two Formula BMW races at Mid-Ohio two years ago, finishing third and fourth. He drove a Firestone Indy Lights car for the first time earlier this week at a test at Putnam Park in Mount Meridian, Ind., where the temperatures were in the nineties. The temperature during qualifying Saturday morning at Mid-Ohio was 77 degrees Fahrenheit with a track temperature of 109, according to Firestone officials.

Vilarinho's times have improved with each session here at Mid-Ohio, but it's a steep learning curve to adapt to a car that is much heavier than anything else he has raced. As the rules stipulate, his fastest lap in qualifying was thrown out because he caused a full-course yellow during the session when he spun trying to find the fastest way around the very challenging course.

Vilarinho's driver coach here is Mario Romancini, who won two Firestone Indy Lights races and finished sixth in the point standings last year while driving for Andersen Racing. He has moved up to the IZOD IndyCar series this year with Conquest Racing and he was the highest-finishing rookie at this year's Indy 500, but unfortunately he is not competing in Sunday's IndyCar race at Mid-Ohio due to a lack of sponsorship. He hopes to secure additional funding so he can return to the IZOD IndyCar Series for the last four oval races of the year.

Although Vilarinho and Romancini are both from Sao Paulo, they didn't know each other well before working together here at Mid-Ohio.

-source: andersen racing

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About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Giancarlo Vilarinho , Mario Romancini
Teams Conquest Racing