St. Pete: Daniel Di Leo race notes

Di Leo proves he is champioship material. (ST. PETERSBURG, FL. Feb. 22, 2003) -- After an intense off season program, Daniel Di Leo started his 2003 campaign in style. Competing in the infamous Barber Dodge Pro Series, the second year driver ...

Di Leo proves he is champioship material.

(ST. PETERSBURG, FL. Feb. 22, 2003) -- After an intense off season program, Daniel Di Leo started his 2003 campaign in style. Competing in the infamous Barber Dodge Pro Series, the second year driver finished an impressive 2nd overall in the inaugural St. Petersburg Grand Prix.

The event took place on Feb.22, and marked Round 1 of the ultra competitive series. The 20 year old driver finished 4th overall in the 2002 Championship, and has high expectations for 2003.

"I learned many valuable lessons last year." said Di Leo. "Experience in this sport is priceless and this year I am confident that I will be a top contender for the championship."

The aspiring Canadian lived up to his expectations with a stellar drive in the season opener. After qualifying on the inside of the second row, Di Leo fell to fourth on the opening lap. He quickly regained his position with a spectacular late breaking maneuver in the breaking zone of turn one. At the halfway point, Di Leo was running in second, 4.7 seconds behind the race leader. After a string of consistent, blistering fast laps, the gap was visibly reduced. With eight minutes left, in the forty five minute feature, Di Leo set a new track record, and was now all over the gearbox of the race leader. The stage was set for a dramatic finish, when unfortunately drops of rain began to fall forcing the race to end under a full course caution.

"To be honest I am a bit disappointed. I never gave up throughout the entire race, and when I finally found myself in striking distance, the race was cut short." explained Di Leo. "After saying that, I am very happy with my result. This is going to be a great championship and scoring valuable points early on will be important."

Daniel heads to Monterrey, Mexico for Round 2 of the ten race championship on March 22. The anticipation is already building and Di Leo is ready for his next challenge.

-dd-

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Series Barber Pro