IPS: Dana survives to take first career win in Milwaukee

Paul Dana won the Milwaukee 100 on the historic Milwaukee Mile, earning his first Menards Infiniti Pro Series race after inheriting the lead from Thiago Medeiros, who was on track to win his fifth consecutive race when mechanical problems...

Paul Dana won the Milwaukee 100 on the historic Milwaukee Mile, earning his first Menards Infiniti Pro Series race after inheriting the lead from Thiago Medeiros, who was on track to win his fifth consecutive race when mechanical problems sidelined the young Brazilian on lap 76 of 100. Medeiros led from the start, pulling away from the field by at least a tenth of a second a lap until he built a twenty second lead. On some laps, Medeiros increased his lead by a half second a lap.

"Obviously, Thiago (Medeiros) took off like a shot, and he was gone," explained Dana on his first career victory. "Pollard and I had a race early. Everybody else just ran into problems. We just kept it underneath all day. It was real slick, unbelievably slick in (Turn) 4. I almost crashed it about 50 times and managed not to. We were on a good pace.

"We led earlier this year, and we ran into some bad luck. So it comes around. So we'll take them any way we can get them."

Medeiros, who lapped the entire field in his Phoenix victory, approached the back of the field at Milwaukee, taking time to assess the proper place to execute a clean pass on each car. With 24 laps to go, Medeiros radio to the pits that he had a tire problem. Hustling his crippled car into the pits, Medeiros spun 180 degrees in an attempt to stop next to his crew. Once stopped, the crew swarmed over the car only to find that a right front wheel bearing caused the ill handling

"That could have been my easiest win," said a dejected Medeiros after the race.

The race ended under caution with P.J. Chesson finishing second after Brad Pollard and Jesse Mason crashed with less than five laps to go. Pollard spun coming off turn four, slid down the track and hit the barrier at the entry to the pits, while Mason, who was following closely in Pollard's tracks, spun in the same place and hit the outside wall.

"I guess, today. I'm really proud of my guys. They stuck with it, kept their heads in there, and we got better as the weekend went on, so it was good," said Chesson.

Al Unser, who had been battling Chesson for fourth place several laps earlier, finished third. Only three cars finished on the lead lap.

"The race was pretty bizarre," commented Unser on is first career podium finish. "I just didn't have the car today. We had been fighting the setup all weekend. I've got to give a shout out to my guys because they were definitely chasing it with me."

Nine cars took the initial green flag but only six made it through the first turn. Arie Luyendyk Jr and Billy Roe were eliminated before the first lap was completed. Leonardo Maia was involved in the first lap incident but continued after reporting to the pits for repairs. Maia was credited with seventh place when he retired early. Medeiros was classified sixth.

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About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Arie Luyendyk , Billy Roe , Leonardo Maia , Paul Dana , Brad Pollard , Jesse Mason , P.J. Chesson , Al Unser