Milwaukee, WI – July 12, 2015 – Sunday at the Milwaukee Mile started solidly for Schmidt Peterson Motorsports, but engine issues ended the race early for James Jakes, followed by contact that ended Ryan Briscoe’s run in the ABC Supply Co. Inc. Wisconsin 250.
Earlier in the day, Briscoe, filling in for the injured James Hinchcliffe, qualified the No. 5 Arrow Electronics car in second place, on the outside of row one. Jakes also had a season-best qualifying effort, putting the No. 7 MediaTech Oculus car fifth on the starting grid.
The SPM teammates made their first pit stops only five laps apart. An air jack issue on the No. 5 car dropped Briscoe back in the field, but only temporarily as he then made steady progress to advance through the field. Jakes’ engine gave out on lap 114, just before the half-way point of the 250-lap race. He finished 23rd.
“I don’t really know what to say,” said Jakes. “The whole team worked really hard this weekend and we had a great car. We got caught in lapped traffic a little bit but we were running six, seventh, eighth, and we really could’ve had a good day.
“I think anybody could’ve finished in the top three today. The guys that run up front just have to manage the situation. It’s a shame obviously because this isn’t our first engine issue but we’ll bounce back strong at the next event. Qualifying was great and we had a quick car. It’s a shame we don’t get any points but we’ll move on.”
Following the caution for Jakes’ car, Briscoe made contact in turn four, coming off the restart. He finished 21st.
“It was a big shame,” said Briscoe. “We had an awesome race car, again. I’m really proud of the whole Arrow Electronics team for their hard work, and for giving me a car that I can go out and race hard. It wasn’t meant to be today. We had a couple of malfunctions during the pit stops that set us back and we ended up going off-strategy and staying on the lead lap, which was huge. With half the race to go, we were still in a fighting position to go for the win today.
“On the restart, we had a lot of cars behind us on new tires and we just sort of got put in a box there in turn three. It felt like I drove into a vacuum and next it felt like the tires were off the ground and I was doing a slow pirouette. It was a real shame. I hate bringing home a busted race car but we’ll fight again next week.”
Before the Verizon IndyCar Series race, RC Enerson earned a second-place finish in the Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires 100-lap competition. Teammates Jack Harvey, Scott Anderson and Ethan Ringel finished fourth, fifth and tenth, respectively. Harvey holds on to his points championship by a margin of 14.
In one week, the Verizon IndyCar Series heads to Newton, Iowa for the 13th race on the 2015 circuit. The Iowa Corn 300 will take place on Saturday, July 18 at the 7/8-mile Iowa Speedway. The 300-lap race will be broadcast live on NBC Sports Network from8-11 p.m. ET and tickets are available at IowaSpeedway.com.