Big Machine Music City Grand Prix Race Reports

Sato and Malukas Both
Victims of Contact in Nashville

Nashville, TN (Sunday, August 7, 2022) – Dale Coyne Racing did not have the day it was hoping for at the Big Machine Music City Grand Prix with both drivers being taken out by competitors. Details for both Takuma Sato (#51 Nurtec ODT – Dale Coyne Racing with RWR) and David Malukas (#18 HMD – Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports) are below.

Malukas Runs Strong in Nashville; Gets Taken Out by Competitor

#18: David Malukas, Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Honda

Nashville, TN (Sunday, August 7, 2022) – Rookie David Malukas (#18 HMD Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports) was on his way to what could possibly have been his best finish this season but contact with another competitor took him out of the race when he was running seventh in Sunday’s Big Machine Music City Grand Prix.

Started: 7th
Finished: 20th

  • Malukas had a great start to the race as he moved into sixth place for the first 10 laps of the 80-lap event.
  • While he fell to 12th before heading to pit lane for his first stop on Lap 20, he then made up ground and was running third when a full course caution came out on Lap 26.
  • The rookie continued to run strong and was still in third place by the time he made his second stop on Lap 54, under a full course caution.
  • Malukas gained a position on his pit stop but with five other cars having stopped a few laps earlier than him, he was running seventh to take the restart.
  • His race ended when Kyle Kirkwood dove on the inside of him going into Turn 9 on Lap 65.
  • The #18 HMD driver didn’t see Kirkwood and the contact between the two put an end to Malukas’ race.
  • He ended up 20th on the results sheet.
  • Malukas has a best finish of eighth this season (Race 2 at Iowa Speedway) and a best start of fifth (Toronto).

David Malukas, #18 Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports Honda
“Our race ended up short. It was very unfortunate. Kyle (Kirkwood) came in for a late move. It seemed a bit on the desperate side, and we collided. We weren’t going to make it through the turn. However, before that crash happened, we were having a very good race. We were maybe looking at a podium with the way the strategies were playing out. Who knows what would have happened, but it seemed like we were on the right track. The driving was good, the strategy was good, the pit stops were great, and I think it was going to be our best result as a team this year, but sadly, Nashville is not so forgiving.”

Sato Sees Race End Early in Nashville Due to Contact

#51: Takuma Sato, Dale Coyne Racing with RWR Honda

Nashville, TN (Sunday, August 7, 2022) – Takuma Sato (#51 Nurtec ODT- Dale Coyne Racing with RWR saw his race come to an early end after he was hit by another competitor not quite halfway through the Big Machine Music City Grand Prix.

Started: 20th
Finished: 21st

  • Sato started his second career race in Nashville from the 20th position.
  • He was running 18th by Lap 10 and had made his way up to 13th by the time he entered pit lane for his first stop on Lap 22.
  • The #51 Nurtec ODT driver was running a good pace and making his way up the field when he attempted a pass on the #29 car of Devlin DeFrancesco.
  • Sato made sure that the rookie driver could see him heading into the Turn 10 corner but the two still made contact and both ended up in the wall.
  • The damage to Sato’s car was too severe to continue and he ended up 21st.
  • In 14 races this season, Sato has a best finish of seventh (IMS road course) and he has a best starting position of second on the streets of Detroit this year.

Career facts:

  • Has six INDYCAR SERIES wins (2013 – Long Beach; 2017 – Indy 500; 2018 – Portland; 2019 – Barber, Gateway: 2020 – Indy 500) 
  • 10 poles (2011 – Iowa, Edmonton; 2013 – Houston Race 1; 2014 – St. Pete, Detroit Race 2; 2017 – Detroit Race 2, Pocono; 2019 – Barber, Texas; 2020 St. Louis Race 2)

Takuma Sato #51 Nurtec ODT Honda – Dale Coyne Racing with RWR
“Our race was very disappointing today. We were making our way up running P15 and making our way to the top 10 but we didn’t quite get there. What happened was that DeFrancesco went wide into Turn 10 and we both hit the wall, normally you can run two-wide there. He said I had turned into him, but I didn’t. I made sure that he saw me, and he did. He explained that someone had hit him from behind, but looking at the footage of on-board cameras, that wasn’t the case. Basically, he didn’t turn, and he crashed into me. What’s mostly disappointing, it’s not just that we didn’t finish the race, we should have good quality, hard racing, but it wasn’t that. As a team, David (Malukas) had a great run, but he also had an unfortunate situation. Not the day we wanted but we’ll keep the momentum going, and we should have a strong race in St. Louis in a couple of weeks.”

Next Up:
Bommarito Automotive Group 500
World Wide Technology Raceway
Race 15 of 17
August 19 – 20, 2022
Race Broadcast: 6pm ET on USA