St. Petersburg, FL (Saturday, March 4, 2023) – Dale Coyne Racing drivers David Malukas (#18 HMD Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports) and Sting Ray Robb (#51 Biohaven – Dale Coyne Racing with RWR) qualified 16th and 23rd respectively for the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. Details for each driver are below.
Malukas to Start Season Opening Race from Eighth Row
St. Petersburg, FL (Saturday, March 4, 2023) – David Malukas (#18 HMD Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports) kicked off his 2023 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season by placing 16th on the starting grid for tomorrow’s Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.
- The sophomore Dale Coyne Racing driver went out in Group 2, in Segment 1 of qualifying.
- He registered his fastest time on his penultimate lap with a time of 1:00.0796. His time placed him eighth in his group.
- Malukas is making his second start at the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg this weekend and his 18th career NTT INDYCAR SERIES start.
- In his debut race last year on the streets of St. Petersburg, the rookie finished 26th after contact with the wall about a quarter of the way into the race.
- Overall, in 2022, Malukas had a best finish of second at World Wide Technology Raceway and a best starting position of fifth (Toronto). He finished in the top 10 three times and started in the top 10 seven times.
- He ended up second in the 2022 Rookie of the Year battle.
David Malukas, #18 Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports Honda
“Unfortunately, it was a short qualifying for us. From first practice to second practice, our car was actually very quick, and we were always in the top half of the field. Even with being in the top 10 or top 12, we didn’t really have a clear lap because it’s obviously a busy field. Going to qualifying we went out on primary tires and I think we set the fastest or second-fastest time on that tire before changing to the Guayule (alternate) tire. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the set up quite right. We didn’t make a big enough change coming from practice and it was too much understeer, so it’s a mistake on our part. We weren’t expecting the track to change that much. So at the end of it, we finished eighth in our group.”
Robb Gains Qualifying Experience in St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg, FL (Saturday, March 4, 2023) – Sting Ray Robb (#51 Biohaven – Dale Coyne Racing with RWR) took part in his first NTT INDYCAR SERIES qualifying on Saturday, placing himself 23rd on the starting grid for Sunday’s season opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.
- The Dale Coyne Racing with RWR crew did a great job getting the #51 Biohaven car ready for qualifying after Robb made contact with the wall during morning practice.
- The rookie went out in Group 1 of qualifying on the alternate Guayule tire.
- He registered his fastest lap time of 1:02.3711 on his eighth and final lap.
- In his most recent race in St. Petersburg, in INDY NXT, he placed fourth last season after starting third.
- Robb finished second in the INDY NXT by Firestone championship last year on the strength of 11 top five finishes, eight podiums, two poles and 99% of laps completed in 14 races, which included the win at Laguna Seca.
Sting Ray Robb #51 Biohaven Honda – Dale Coyne Racing with RWR
“It was a bit of a tough day. We made contact with the wall in practice this morning, but the team did a great job getting the car back together and I was able to jump back into the car right before qualifying. It’s not the position we wanted to be in today, we wanted to be further up the grid but we’re ready for the race tomorrow and ready to put some experience under my belt.”