#98 CURB/AGAJANIAN/TEAM 3G CAR QUALIFIES 19th FOR HONDA INDY 200 AT MID-OHIO SPORTSCAR COURSE
LEXINGTON(OH.) -- Heading to Mid-Ohio, Richard Antinucci was very upbeat, given his past track-record there. Just as in Watkins Glen, Richard has won on the circuit in Indy Lights and was excited to return to a circuit he already knows. Antinucci's qualifying effort on the 2.258-mile road course showed improvement with each lap, at the outset with black primary tyres and then on alternate (red side-walled), setting a best time of 1:08.8516 which equates to an average speed of 118.063 mph (190.003 kph).
In today's qualifying first session the San Diego-based driver went on track in group 1, holding the 10th position throughout the session, albeit nearly pipping Dan Wheldon to 9th on his 14th and last lap. The Honda 200 at Mid-Ohio presented by Westfield Insurance will be Antinucci's fourth IndyCar start as well as the 13th race of the 2009 open wheel season.
"I rank Mid-Ohio among my favorite venues. Unfortunately we could not join the open test here some weeks ago and morevoer we could not spend as much time as we would have liked setting up the car. Some reliability issues kind of hampered our progress. We had a water pump failure yesterday that cost us valuable track time. Moreover we could not fully benefit from this morning's practice as we had a small clutch problem and then rain came down with 20 minutes to go.
Taking all this into account it's almost surprising that I've missed a slot on Row 9 by less than three hundredths of a second. With more track time we could definitely have achieved a better starting spot here, because the car wasn't bad for a baseline. Its simply a matter of testing at least as much as our competitors. At the moment we're testing less. Tonight we'll be adjusting the car setup, as there's room for improvement. Unfortunately overtaking at Mid-Ohio is a tall order and starting from 19th doesn't help, but I'm ready to charge tomorrow."