ANOTHER TOP 5 FINISH FOR KAISER
12 MAY 2014
Speedway, IN (May 12, 2014) –Rounds 5 and 6 of the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires proved to be filled with lots of action on the 2.439 mile road course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Rookie José Gutiérrez added another podium for Juncos Racing finishing a season best third at the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis. Teammates Kyle Kaiser, Julia Ballario, and Spencer Pigot all finished inside the Top-10.
Claiming his best finish of the season, rookie José Gutiérrez, 17, driving the #5 Racing for Mexico/Juncos Racing car took home an impressive third in Round 6. The young Mexican qualified seventh and finished seventh in Round 5. Gutiérrez moves to seventh in the Pro Mazda Championship.
“The first race was very interesting with lots of yellows and passing opportunities,” said Gutiérrez. “I learned how to start the race rolling and find the drafts on the long straightaways. I was pleased with my seventh place finish in Round 5. In Round 6 I had a great start and went to fourth in the first turn. I was able to make some passes and move up to second later in the race and then made a mistake that moved me back to third. I was able to stay in third for the rest of the race and take my first podium. I want to thank Juncos Racing for giving me this opportunity and my family who believes in me.”
Kyle Kaiser, 18, driving the #18 InterVision/NetApp/JuniperNetworks/Riverbed/Juncos Racing car added a Top-5 performance to his season finishing fifth in Round 6. Kaiser qualified sixth and finished 13th in Round 5 after being penalized for an on track incident. Kaiser holds on to third in the Pro Mazda Championship.
“It was a bit of a rough weekend for the team,” said Kaiser. “Everybody battled with bad luck but I am happy to come out third in points for the championship. Hopefully we can get back to the positive momentum we started with for the next track. It’s an oval so everybody should be starting on equal ground and I’m looking forward to another good weekend on track.”
Spencer Pigot, 20, driving the #7 Doug Mockett & Company/Rising Star Racing/VitaminPro App/California Scents/Juncos Racing captured his third pole of the season. Pigot had a tough battle in both rounds after falling to the back of the field early in both races. The American was able to make his way inside the Top-10 finishing eighth in both Round 5 and 6. Pigot remains first in the Pro Mazda Championship.
“It was a tough weekend for us,” said Pigot. “We had a lot going for us in qualifying. The first race was a bit of a mess with lots of contact and people driving all over the place which sent us to the back of the pack. I was making my way back up the field when more contact took my front wing off. We were always trying to fight back to the front in Round 5. In the next race we were comfortably running in second then on a restart I was hit again dropping me back in the field. It was very disappointing but it is what it is and we will continue to fight our way back. I think we are still the car to beat and it will all be good in the end.”
Argentinean rookie Julia Ballario, 22, driving the #6 Pistas Argentinas/Juncos Racing car took home two more Top-10 finishes taking seventh in Round 6 and 10th in Round 5. Ballario moves to 12th in the Pro Mazda Championship.
“It was great to finish inside the Top-10 for both races for championship points this weekend,” said Ballario. “I was able to avoid a lot of the incidents on track. In practice we had great results running in the Top-5. Even though we didn’t finish in the Top-5 we still had a good result.”
Team Owner, Ricardo Juncos, was extremely impressed with the rookie José Gutiérrez’s performance taking his first podium of the season. Juncos Racing holds on to the team championship after the six rounds in the Pro Mazda Championship.
“This weekend was the toughest for us so far this season,” said Juncos. “We took it very well despite the situations we ran into on track. Unfortunately sometimes there are situations that you cannot control. There was a lot of contact made by drivers and caused the nose to fall off on both Julia’s and Spencer’s cars. Even though it was a difficult weekend for us we were able to grab the pole position by .300 seconds without a draft. This shows that the team is still in good shape. The whole team did a great job with all four cars finishing in the Top-8 and we added another podium with José’s finish. We didn’t expect to get a podium finish so quickly with a rookie but this shows the level of driver that we have and the level of development in our program. I cannot be any happier with the drivers, the team, the sponsors for all that they do for this team. We are still leading the championship and have Kyle in third and Spencer in first in the drivers championship. Indianapolis Motor Speedway is no question the best track in the world. It was great to have a strong finish at our home track adding another podium for the season. There is still a long way to go in the championship so we will continue to work hard and keep our heads up as we head into the next race.”
The 2014 Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires season moves on to the first oval of the season May 24th at Lucas Oil Raceway in Clermont, Indiana. For more information please visit juncosracing.com and promazdachampionship.com.