Team Kool Green Gateway race report

Team KOOL Green drivers Jonny Kane and Jeff Simmons finished 9th and 15th respectively in today's Indy Lights race at Gateway International Raceway. Simmons was running a strong second, up one spot from his 3rd-place grid position, when he spun...

Team KOOL Green drivers Jonny Kane and Jeff Simmons finished 9th and 15th respectively in today's Indy Lights race at Gateway International Raceway.

Simmons was running a strong second, up one spot from his 3rd-place grid position, when he spun between turns three and four on lap 57, making contact with the wall. This was Simmons' first DNF of the season, breaking a string of two consecutive podium finishes for the promising rookie.

Kane, who had struggled with the handling of his car all weekend, finally had the setup he needed during the race. After starting 14th on the grid, he fought his way up five spots to finish ninth and collect three championship points.

Pole-sitter Townsend Bell led flag-to-flag to claim his second victory of the season, with Casey Mears and Jason Bright rounding out the top three. Series points leader Scott Dixon had his first DNF of the year after hitting the wall on lap 19.

Dixon's misfortune, combined with Bell scoring the maximum 22 points on the weekend, has tightened the Indy Lights championship. Dixon, who had a commanding 42-point lead coming into the race, now leads Bell by just 20 points.

Simmons scored no points this weekend and is in seventh place in the championship with 78 points. TKG teammate Kane is 11th in the standings with 49 points.

JEFF SIMMONS , #26 Team KOOL Green Lola T97/20:
(Started 3rd / Did not finish, classified 15th / 7th in standings with 78 points)

"I had some oversteer in (turns) three and four from the very beginning but I still had understeer coming off the corners. I had adjusted the weightjacker on the KOOL car to try to get rid of some of the oversteer and I think it helped somewhat. I had also changed the way I entered the corner to try to make it better and I'd gotten to where I could be stable through there. On that lap I'm still not sure what happened or why it came around. I'd never had oversteer at that point. It happened really early in the corner. I was actually kind of expecting to pick up a little bit of understeer because I was starting to get close to the car in front of me. It came around quickly and I just didn't have time to save it. Once it started it was gone. It's very disappointing, because it put us pretty far behind in the Rookie of the Year chase and took us out of the top five in points."

JONNY KANE , #27 Team KOOL Green Lola T97/20:
(Started 14th / Finished 9th / 9th in standings with 49 points)

"I got a couple of good restarts. I almost got (Rolando) Quintanilla on one but he sort of chopped down on me a little bit and I lost momentum and lost a few spots then. It took me a while to get those back again. Otherwise, I think we could have maybe put the KOOL car a couple places higher. It's just so tough to pass here. There is so much (turbulent) air coming off the car in front that it's very difficult to follow close enough to get past. But we started near the back and still came away with some points. We've got a good street course coming up in Houston where we should do well."

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About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Casey Mears , Scott Dixon , Townsend Bell , Jonny Kane , Jason Bright , Jeff Simmons