DREYER & REINBOLD RACING FINISH IN TOP 10 WITH MANNING FOR 200TH RACE START St.Petersburg, FL (April 5, 2009)- Dreyer & Reinbold Racing kicked off their 200th race start with a bang at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. The team had some...
DREYER & REINBOLD RACING FINISH IN TOP 10 WITH MANNING FOR 200TH RACE START
St.Petersburg, FL (April 5, 2009)- Dreyer & Reinbold Racing kicked off their 200th race start with a bang at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. The team had some ups and downs during the race, but finished on a high with a top-ten result.
Darren Manning wasted no time getting acclimated to his No.23 machine. The 33 year old got the call on Tuesday, proving right away that he was the correct choice. Manning started in tenth position and had a very eventful race to say the least. On the first lap he jumped his way up three positions putting him in seventh place. Starting his first stint out on the Firestone Primary (black-sidewall) tires was the right decision as he made his first stop on lap 34 making the switch to the Firestone Alternate (red-sidewall) tires.
Unfortunately ,the number of yellow flags did not play in the team's favor, but that didn't prevent the Englishman from fighting his way up the grid. On lap 66, Manning came in and put on a second set of the Firestone Alternate (red-sidewall) tires. Shortly after the second stop, Manning had to come in on lap 83 after making contact with Hideki Mutoh, causing his left front tire to go flat. He finished the race on the Firestone Primary (black-sidewall) tires and continued to make passes, bringing his Dreyer & Reinbold Racing chassis to an eighth place finish.
It was another story for rookie, Brit, Mike Conway. The 25 year-old showed good speed all weekend long and was making progress, but unfortunately ran into some bad luck. Starting from 12th position, Conway tried to get around Dan Wheldon, but made contact with him and ended up in the tire wall. The team tried to repair his car, but substantial damage was done to the right rear suspension. Conway's day ended early.
Dreyer & Reinbold Racing heads back to Indianapolis and then onto Kansas for a test before heading to the second round of the IndyCar Series season. The team will hit the pavement April 19th for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.
What they have to say...
Mike Conway: "I'm disappointed, but I learned a lot this weekend. We just need to focus on the next race and do well in Long Beach."
Darren Manning: "We had a very good race. We were fast. I was racing with everybody and was up to P3 at one point. As all the pit strategies were playing out everybody stayed out and did a different strategy to us and we might have lost out a little bit with those guys getting lucky with the yellows towards the end and we were a little unlucky with the puncture as well and lost a spot. All in all, we were strong all the way through the race and the car was good on both sets of tires. I was overtaking people all through the race and that was hard to do. I'm very happy with the way the weekend has gone with the limited time."
Dennis Reinbold: "With Mike we just had an unfortunate incident on the first lap and it's too bad, because we really wanted him to get out and run all day and get some experience and learn what the stints feel like as we go through them. We will just have to pick it up in Long Beach and just go from there. We anticipate that he will be very good. Darren did a great job all day. The yellows didn't help us very much today. We had some bad cycles with them. We got up to fourth place early on and then we kept fighting back, and dropped back to 14th and fought all the way back up to 8th. The guys made some great pit stops. We were disappointed with 8th place because we felt that we had more in the car, but we will be ready for Long Beach."