Billy Asaro claimed fifth place today in round three of the USF2000 Championship series at Mosport International Raceway. The eighteen-year-old driver of the number thirty-three Indeck/Forsythe car put on a great show charging forward from ...
Billy Asaro claimed fifth place today in round three of the USF2000 Championship series at Mosport International Raceway. The eighteen-year-old driver of the number thirty-three Indeck/Forsythe car put on a great show charging forward from fourteenth on the grid in front of a large crowd at Mosport. Among the many spectators cheering Asaro on were friends, family and guests from his personal sponsor, Rodair.
On the first lap alone, Asaro passed seven cars, amazing onlookers around the circuit as he threaded his way through the field.
"That first lap was awesome," Billy exclaimed with a grin.
Over the next few circuits, he moved up to fourth, a position he held for several laps before slipping back to fifth during the closing stages of the twenty-lap (approximately 80km) contest.
Today's race marked a great change in fortunes for Billy as he'd been handicapped by a lack of straight-a-way speed during the qualifying sessions on Friday and during yesterday's race.
"The crew changed the motor last night," Asaro explained. "We went back to a motor we used for practice on Thursday. We knew it wasn't a particularly fast engine, but it had to be better than what we'd used the past couple of days. It was better, but still not full performance. There could be a problem hiding somewhere else."
While the change of motor offered some improvement, Billy's main problem was that his car was slower than others on the straight, even when running in the draft of another car.
Asaro briefly ran at the tail end of a lead train of four cars, but gradually began to lose ground and eventually his priority changed from challenging the leaders to defending his position from those behind.
"I was quick through the corners and I hoped I'd be able to fight for the lead," Asaro said of his early pace, "But I started to fall back every time I went down the straight. Overall, I'm not disappointed with fifth, but for a while there it looked like I had a shot at the win."
While he may downplay a fifth-place finish, Billy is becoming famous for his never-give-up attitude and you can be sure he wrung everything out of himself and his car today. A charge from fourteenth to fifth in such a talent-laden series is a terrific accomplishment.
Asaro now shifts his focus to round four as the series resumes next Saturday night at the five-eighths mile oval in Indianapolis Raceway Park.