USA: Atlantic Racing Indianapolis race notes

Another podium finish for Atlantic Racing Team at Indianapolis The Formula BMW USA Championship followed the Formula One World Championship this past weekend to the United States Grand Prix in Indianapolis, Indiana for Rounds 5 and 6. To say...

Another podium finish for Atlantic Racing Team at Indianapolis

The Formula BMW USA Championship followed the Formula One World Championship this past weekend to the United States Grand Prix in Indianapolis, Indiana for Rounds 5 and 6.

To say that the races were exciting is an understatement. With the championship lead on the line at every race, as well as many close races for spots in the top ten, the drivers and teams were going all out to attain the best results possible for themselves and move up in the championship standings.

It was another successful weekend for Halifax's Atlantic Racing Team, who finished on the podium in Saturday's race with driver Dominik Jackson, and qualified twice on the front row with Colombian Federico Montoya, brother of F1 star Juan Pablo.

It was Atlantic Racing Team's second podium finish of the 2004 season.

QUALIFYING

As in Rounds 3 and 4 in Montreal last weekend, the starting grid for Rounds 5 and 6 of the 2004 Formula BMW USA Championship were determined in a single 25-minute qualifying session. Each driver's fastest lap set their starting order for Saturday's Round 5 race. Their second fastest laps set the order for Sunday's Round 6 contest.

With the pole undecided until the final seconds, Round 3 winner Jonathan Summerton (HBR Motorsport) recorded his first pole of the season after posting a time of 1:37.456 around the 2.6-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway USGP circuit. He just took the top spot on his last lap from Federico Montoya (Atlantic Racing Team). Montoya started second (1:37.769) after pacing the field for most of the session. Round 4 winner Matt Jaskol (Team Autotecnica) started third (1:37.909). The trio's second fastest times were also the best of the field and they started at the front in Round 6.

"Federico again showed brilliant listening abilities, followed all of Micha's advice (German Engineer)," said ART Team Engineer Lucas Strackerjan. "We should really thank Micha for all the advice, expertise and set-up hints. One can see that Muecke Motorsport in Germany will always be in front with a calibre like Micha," concluded Lucas.

SATURDAY - ROUND 5

Jonathan Summerton led the first four laps of the race until a charging Montoya took the lead away from him. The front row starters then ran nose-to-tail, hardly more than a car length apart, for the next 10 laps. On the final lap, heading down Indy's long front straight, Summerton backed off just enough to give himself a run on Montoya and completed the pass under braking for turn 1. Montoya closed, but spun and ultimately finished seventh.

Summerton completed 14 laps of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway USGP circuit in the 30-minute contest, finishing 4.090 seconds ahead of Championship points leader and HBR Motorsport teammate Andreas Wirth. Dominik Jackson (Atlantic Racing Team) was third. His teammates Kyle Herder and Trevor Daley finished respectively 12th and 16th. "Everybody pulled together and the results were great, "said Dominik Jackson. The Team Engineer Lucas Strackerjan has really grown into his role as the team leader, which was evident in the organization of the crew. Lucas worked his magic getting the car set up for the tricky conditions. All the guys, as usual, did a stellar job on strategy. That makes the difference between finishing at the back and finishing at the front. I'm honored to be part of such a successful and well-run effort," concluded Jackson.

SUNDAY - ROUND 6

The drivers were greeted again by stunning weather conditions at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as Team Autotecnica's Matt Jaskol took the checkered flag, finishing ahead of the HBR Motorsport of Andreas Wirth and the AIM Autosport of James Hinchcliffe. Federico Montoya, Kyle Herder and Dominik Jackson (Atlantic Racing Team) finished respectively 7th, 8th and 9th while Brampton's Trevor Daley finished in 14th place.

"I have to say I am a little bit disappointed as we qualified so well. However, the important thing for me was just to be here," Montoya explained. "I have to thank Atlantic Racing Team for making it possible for me to continue the run for the championship and at least take a swing at it."

"Our newly formed team, consisting of mechanics and helping hands from Scotland, Australia, Canada (Vancouver, Ottawa, Halifax, Toronto), is slowly turning into the highly professional, well oiled machine that we need them to be", said Team Principal Ingo Strackerjan. "BMW USA does a terrific job with their seminars, driver coaching, presentation, hospitality, food service, parts and tire services. A real classy outfit, run by highly motivated professionals", concluded Strackerjan.

The seventh and eight round of the Formula BMW USA are set for July 2-3 at Burke Lakefront Airport, when the series serves as the support race for the Champ Car Grand Prix of Cleveland.

ABOUT THE FORMULA BMW: The ultra-modern Formula BMW race car has been lining up on the grid all around the world since the 2002 season. It sets standards above all on the safety technology front. The single seater, powered by a 140 bhp BMW motorcycle engine producing speeds up to 140 mph, features a carbon-fibre chassis and fulfills the safety requirements of the much higher-performance Formula 3 cars.

In 2004, Formula BMW will be staged in four different series held in Germany, England, Asia and the USA. Formula BMW events will be part of the Formula One support program on five occasions around the world. All the series go hand-in-hand with a comprehensive education and coaching program, as well as substantial financial backing for promising young talent. The most distinguished graduate is Ralf Schumacher. The star of the BMW WilliamsF1 Team made his racing debut in the junior class in 1992.

Atlantic Racing Team is a year-round professional motorsports organization with its race shop located in Halifax, Nova Scotia (Canada).

-www.atlanticracingteam.com.

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About this article
Series Formula BMW
Drivers Ralf Schumacher , Trevor Daley , Kyle Herder , Lucas Strackerjan , Andreas Wirth , James Hinchcliffe , Jonathan Summerton , Matt Jaskol
Teams Williams