Scarallo Comes from 15th to Ninth For RLR/Andersen Racing Sunday at St. Pete ST. PETERSBURG, Fla., April 1 - Joey Scarallo of Smithtown, N.Y. avoided penalties and kept out of trouble on an unforgiving course to advance six positions and finish...
Scarallo Comes from 15th to Ninth For RLR/Andersen Racing Sunday at St. Pete
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla., April 1 - Joey Scarallo of Smithtown, N.Y. avoided penalties and kept out of trouble on an unforgiving course to advance six positions and finish ninth in Sunday's Indy Pro Series race at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. He drove the RLR/Andersen Racing No. 15, which advertises GroupAWheels.com.
His teammate, Andrew Prendeville of Morristown, N.J., had an incident with Mike Potekhen at the start and lost two laps in the 40-lap/72-mile race. Anxious to get more experience on the temporary, 1.8-mile street course as well as more points, Prendeville persevered and ended up 17th with his Dallara, which promotes the Best Friends Animal Society.
Prendeville is now tenth and Scarallo is 14th in the point standings heading into one of their biggest races of the year, the Freedom 100 on Friday, May 25. It is held at a facility some great drivers never get the chance to race on, the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Prendeville started 13th and Scarallo started 15th on Sunday for the second half of the weekend doubleheader at St. Pete.
Scarallo dropped to 18th initially. He got 17th when Jay Howard crashed in Turn 9 on lap two, and 16th when Prendeville pitted under that yellow after his trouble with Potekhen. Scarallo was sandwiched between Matt Jaskol and Jaime Camara for the restart on lap nine.
Camara got around him to push him back to 17th on lap 10 and then Phil Giebler wiggled by him on lap 11 to relegate him to 18th. He got two spots back on lap 12 when Sean Guthrie and Potekhen made contact in Turn 3 to bring out the second full-course yellow.
That put Scarallo back between Giebler and Ken Losch in 16th for the restart on lap 18. Camara took Giebler's spot a bit later but Scarallo was still in 16th at the halfway point.
Jonathan Klein had to serve a drive-through penalty for blocking on lap 21, which put Scarallo up to 15th. Klein got back around him on lap 24 to push him back to 16th, but he got 15th back two laps later when Stephen Simpson, who had been fifth, stopped in Turn 11 when he lost his clutch. Scarallo was still in 15th with 10 laps to go, but he moved up to 13th two laps later when Brad Jaeger spun and Matt Jaskol fell back. Klein and Logan Gomez came together in Turn 8 to bring out the fourth yellow of the race on lap 36, which moved Scarallo up 11th. He appeared in the top 10 for the first time on lap 37 when Chris Festa had to serve a penalty for blocking, and he got ninth when Richard Antinucci got a similar penalty.
Prendeville and Potekhen tangled at the start in Turn 1. Although Potekhen got off unscathed, Prendeville's car had left-front suspension damage and he was forced to pit for repairs. Another pit stop to remedy an overheating condition and a drive-through penalty were too much to overcome, but he finished the race two laps down.
Alex Lloyd won both races. On Sunday the other podium finishers were Wade Cunningham and Bobby Wilson.
Joey Scarallo: "Overall the car wasn't quite as good as it was yesterday. We made some changes this morning, and some things were better and some things weren't as good.
"The brakes were good today. We made some other adjustments in the morning that didn't work as well as we thought they would in the race. We weren't as good in some of the twisty corners. But we went faster today and we got a better result, so that was good. We just need to go faster some more.
"I didn't have any real close calls. The whole thing was playing with the swaybars and just trying to finish. It was relatively uneventful. I was just trying to make the car better.
"But that was my first top-10 in this series, so we're getting there."
Andrew Prendeville: "I had an incident with Mike Potekhen at the start in Turn 1 that caused left-front damage. I was trying to pass him. I don't know what to say about it except that I did everything I was supposed to do.
"It bent my left-front suspension. I had to make three pit stops, and I went two laps down. The first was to repair the damage. The second one was for an overheating issue; we checked that and pulled a panel off the sidepod. I've been told the third was for a stop-and-go penalty for speeding on pit road, but I don't know about that.
"After we changed the broken part the car was good.
"The bottom line is that we only lost one position through all of our problems this weekend, which wasn't bad."