Jonny Baker is the man tasked with ensuring the Road To Indy program capitalizes on a resurgence in IndyCar’s popularity as young drivers struggle to find the finances and opportunities in European open-wheel racing. He spoke to David Malsher.
News in depth
Rinus VeeKay only needed to start practice to clinch the Pro Mazda title although he was beaten by Oliver Askew and David Malukas in the races, while Kyle Kirkwood scored his 11th and 12th USF2000 wins, as Mazda signed off from its Road To Indy sponsorship.
Rinus VeeKay scored his fifth straight Pro Mazda win and seventh of the season leading from the drop of the green flag to the checkered flag at the 1.25-mile oval, to edge head a Juncos Racing 1-2.
Rinus VeeKay dominated the Pro Mazda races for Juncos Racing, Kyle Kirkwood did the same for Cape Motorsports in USF2000, their prime virtues not only raceday pace but also the ability to dodge the carnage…
David Malukas and Toby Sowery went 1-2 for BN Racing in both Pro Mazda events, as Cape Motorsports’ Kyle Kirkwood dominated the first USF2000 race and stole the second (chaotic) race on the last lap.
Parker Thompson and Kyle Kirkwood led the Pro Mazda and USF2000 races from pole position to checkered flag.
As usual, the Mazda Road To Indy’s junior series produced fantastic slipstreaming races around the IMS road course, with Pro Mazda and USF2000 producing four winners from four races.
Rinus VeeKay put Juncos Racing front and center for the opening races in Pro Mazda’s new Tatuus PM-18 era, while Kyle Kirkwood and Alex Baron clinched USF2000 victories.
Team Pelfrey has announced Andres Gutierrez will race its #81 Pro Mazda car in 2018, while Exclusive Autosport has signed Manuel Cabrera for its USF2000 team.
Canada’s Parker Thompson will remain with Exclusive Autosport this season as the squad moves up the Mazda Road To Indy ladder.
RP Motorsport, which won races in the now-defunct Formula 3.5 V8 Series and dominated the EuroFormula Open championship in 2017, is to embark on its first season of Pro Mazda with Harrison Scott and Ludovico Laurini.
Team Pelfrey has confirmed it has signed Sting Ray Robb to race in Pro Mazda next year, while Julian van der Watt has joined its USF2000 squad.
Juncos Racing has announced it has signed former Team Pelfrey driver Carlos Cunha for the 2018 Pro Mazda Championship, teaming him with Rinus VeeKay and Robert Megennis.
Dutch youngster Rinus VeeKay, who took second in USF2000 this year, has been announced to move up to Pro Mazda with frontrunner team Juncos Racing for 2018.
Juncos Racing’s Victor Franzoni dominated the wet championship finale at Watkins Glen to clinch the Pro Mazda title over Cape Motorsports’ Anthony Martin, the pair of them separated at the checkered flag by Team Pelfrey’s Carlos Cunha.
Victor Franzoni extended his championship lead to nine points with pole for tomorrow’s title-decider, while chief rival Anthony Martin had his two best laps deleted for setting an extra flying lap after the checkered flag had fallen.
Juncos Racing's Victor Franzoni scored his sixth win of the season but only after he passed the fast-starting but fair-fighting Anthony Martin, who now falls eight points behind his title rival.
With just two points between them, the Victor Franzoni vs Anthony Martin duel for the Pro Mazda crown is set to rage over two races this weekend… except the Brazilian appears to have a huge pace advantage.
Juncos Racing’s Victor Franzoni has evened things up in the title battle with five-time race winner Anthony Martin of Cape Motorsports, after defeating the polesitter at Gateway Motorsports Park.
Juncos Racing has purchased three new Tatuus PM-18s in preparation for the 2018 Pro Mazda Championship.
Anthony Martin won his fifth race in his last six tries at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course but Andersen Promotions has impounded the cars of the top-three finishers to conduct a more robust technical inspection.
Turn 3 Pro Mazda crash