MADISON, Ill., Sunday, August 26, 2001 - Kelley Racing driver Mark Dismore brought home his best finish of the season for the No. 28 Delphi Automotive Systems/Bryant Heating & Cooling Indy Racing car. The Delphi/Bryant crew used pit and fuel ...
MADISON, Ill., Sunday, August 26, 2001 - Kelley Racing driver Mark Dismore brought home his best finish of the season for the No. 28 Delphi Automotive Systems/Bryant Heating & Cooling Indy Racing car. The Delphi/Bryant crew used pit and fuel strategy to get Dismore his first podium finish of the season with a second-place finish in the Gateway Indy 250.
Dismore started 19th, but quickly worked his way towards the front of the field. Following one of the early restarts, Dismore got his No. 28 car sideways, causing him to pit out of sequence.
"We got buried in the back at the beginning, but we got a good start," said Dismore. "On one of the restarts I had a good line around the top and the car got sideways. I was so sideways that my right front tire was smoking. I thought I had lost it, but gathered it back up and made a pit stop on the next yellow and the crew threw another set of tires on the car. That set us up to do what we did at the end. Everything hopefully happens for a reason. I think that stop put us in a position to stop and fill it up with fuel which put us where we were at on our fuel strategy."
The Delphi/Bryant team kept their fingers crossed as they gambled on fuel strategy at the end of the race. Many teams still needed to pit during the last yellow, but the Delphi/Bryant car stayed on the track and the strategy paid off in the end.
"If the track would have been a mile longer, I think I would have been the winner because I think Little Al (Unser) was running on fumes," said Dismore. "I probably had about another lap-and-a-half left in fuel and I think he had even less. This is fantastic and it just feels so good to finally get to the end of one of these deals without some sort of trauma in the middle. I'm real proud of my Delphi/Bryant guys. I want to thank Delphi, Bryant, and Firestone. We had 80 laps on our last set of Firestone tires and they were still hooked up. All in all it was a fantastic day for me." Dismore's teammate Scott Sharp started strong in third position, quickly taking over second once the green flag fell at the start of the race. "I've got to take my hat off to the Delphi crew," said Sharp. "We took a big step this weekend by coming back here with a faster package than we had in testing. We really made some gains. We were fast all weekend and had great pit stops."
About a third of the way into the race, Sharp began losing power in the car due to an electrical problem. He finished in eighth position and remains third in the Driver Points Championship.
"Once we got through our first set of tires, our car was pretty hooked up," said Sharp. "Once we went up on the tire stagger and got going the car was really good. Unfortunately at about the same time, we developed some type of electrical problem. Sometimes it got really bad and we were losing 8 to 9 mph on the straightaways. We just did the best we could and the guys gave me some great stops. We're probably lucky that we finished in the top-10 today."
Kelley Racing heads to Chicago next weekend to compete in the inaugural Delphi Indy 300 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill.