Junqueira & Moraes Earn High Marks in Kansas Kansas City, Kansas (April 27, 2008) - Both Dale Coyne Racing drivers turned in solid accomplishments Sunday in the IndyCarÂ® Series Road Runner Turbo 300 at the 1.5-mile oval Kansas Speedway. Bruno...
Junqueira & Moraes Earn High Marks in Kansas
Kansas City, Kansas (April 27, 2008) - Both Dale Coyne Racing drivers turned in solid accomplishments Sunday in the IndyCar® Series Road Runner Turbo 300 at the 1.5-mile oval Kansas Speedway.
Bruno Junqueira may have gotten off to a slow start this weekend, but he finished on a high-note as the 31-year old Brazilian drove his #18 Z-Line Designs car to a 15th place finish Sunday afternoon. He gained 11 positions, which was the third highest in the race.
"It was great to finish 15th in my second oval race of the season," said Bruno Junqueira. "The Z-Line Designs car handled great all day. The balance was good, but we lost a couple of laps due to speed and a couple laps pitting on the yellow at the wrong time. We were running the same times of the entire field with the exception of the two Ganassi cars."
Junqueira now turns his focus to the 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 25. He has had great success in four previous starts at the famed brickyard. He finished fifth twice (2001 & 2004) and won the pole in 2002.
"I'm looking forward to returning to Indy next week," said Junqueira. "I have driving well at that track and would love to give Dale Coyne Racing and Z-Line Designs a podium finish at there."
Mario Moraes rewarded his team with a 17th place finish after starting the race 27th. The 19-year old rookie came within five minutes of missing the race entirely because of his crash into the wall between turns one and two Friday morning. Ten minutes into Friday's practice session, something in his right rear wheel assembly broke causing him to lose control of the car and hit the wall at over 200 mph.
"After everything that happened to us this weekend I think to finish the race in 17th was a great way to end it," said Mario Moraes. "It was hard starting the race because I had no idea how the car was going to handle since I was only able to get about 10 laps in before the accident. I'm looking forward to heading to Indy for the month of May and my rookie orientation next week."
The Dale Coyne Racing team showed how determination could pay off and they spent more than 24 hours re-building the #19 Sonny's Bar-B-Q car to get Moraes into the race. The team had to wait for a rear wing and left side pod to be overnighted from Indianapolis. With five minutes to the command, the team rolled the finished car onto the starting grid.
"I have to give a big "Thank You" to all my team for rebuilding the car and allowing me to race today," said Moraes. "They worked late into the night and were here at the crack of dawn fixing the car. They get all the credit for today."