The Herdez Competition team suffered a rare and as yet not fully diagnosed mechanical failure today involving the refueling valve (aka "buckeye") on the number 16 car. With the team unable to refill the car's 35 gallon fuel tank, rookie Mario ...
The Herdez Competition team suffered a rare and as yet not fully diagnosed mechanical failure today involving the refueling valve (aka "buckeye") on the number 16 car. With the team unable to refill the car's 35 gallon fuel tank, rookie Mario Domínguez was forced to retire on lap 74 of the 250 lap event.
Mario Domínguez - Driver
"It's just too bad that this kind of thing has to happen in the race when we can't fix it. We had a good race car today - good enough to run with the leaders. But we didn't get the job done in qualifying yesterday which really cost us. It's really frustrating because we all had high hopes to come away with a good result and some points today."
Keith Wiggins - Managing Director
"We're thinking of changing our religion. We haven't diagnosed what it is yet - but something is just not right! To be honest, I can hardly believe it. What is particularly concerning is that after Jimmy Vasser's problem in Motegi, all of the refueling valves were sent back to the manufacturer to be checked and serviced. So for all intents and purposes, the valve is brand new. It worked perfectly during Friday and Saturday and throughout pit stop practice this morning. Obviously, this is a serious issue so we'll continue to investigate until we feel confident that we have it fixed permanently."
The Miller Lite 250 marks Domínguez's fourth start in the CART FedEx Championship Series.
In 2001, Mario finished in second position at The Milwaukee Mile in a Dayton Indy Lights car after starting in sixth.
Domínguez currently stands 18th in the Drivers Championship with two points.
After a brief stop at the team's home-base in Indianapolis, the crew will rejoin the race transporter on the west coast beginning on Wednesday, June 5th. Round five of the CART FedEx Championship Series will be contested on the 2.2-mile Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca in Monterey, California on June 9th. The Bridgestone Grand Prix of Monterey will mark the second of three back to back to back races for the series.