Archives for Dale Coyne Racing PR

Dale Coyne Racing Completes Successful Test in the West

Avondale, Arizona (February 27, 2016) – Dale Coyne Racing along with rookie driver Conor Daly and Luca Filippi completed a productive two-day test at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) on Saturdaynight.

With this being the first visit for Daly at a 1-mile track aboard an Indy car and only the second-time for Filippi, the pair knew that it was going to be an intense learning curve.

Despite their lack of practice at this type of track, the two drivers impressed over the course of the two days gaining tons of experience and gathering loads of data that will be useful for when the team comes back to race at PIR on April 2, 2016.

Daly did a combined total of 255 laps with Filippi orbiting the track 233 times. They simulated different kinds of racing conditions, including running alone as well as on full tanks in traffic and achieved everything they set out to accomplish prior to arriving at PIR.

Filippi ended the final three-hour test session on Saturday night in sixth place with a best lap of 19.6833 seconds while Daly found himself in eighth with a fastest lap time of 19.7490.

The Dale Coyne Racing team will be back on track on March 2, 2016 at Sebring International Raceway for a one-day test at the historic track.

The 2016 INDYCAR season kicks off with the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on March 13, 2016.

(photo courtesy of Dale Coyne Racing)

(photo courtesy of Dale Coyne Racing)

Conor Daly – #18 Jonathan Byrd’s Hospitality & Restaurant Group

“I’m feeling good with how things went. We’re just working away. We’re a couple of days behind other teams that have tested here, which is to be expected. Information is very important. They have some and we have a little bit less. It’s just about working through that, getting used to the track, getting used to everything. It’s all new for both Luca and I here. I’m happy with what we’re doing, it would have been nice maybe to have a few more sets of tires to run some things but it is what it is. I’m just happy to continue working and that’s the thing that we have to do. It doesn’t matter where we are on the time sheet right now, there’s no winning here, it’s one of those things that we’re happy with what we’re doing.
“Running in traffic, at night, is pretty hectic. Cars are lively, that’s for sure. We could probably use a little bit more downforce in traffic in a race situation but it’s fun, as well. It’s cool to experience this because it’s new for me. It’s going to be a challenge but we just need to keep working on our car in traffic and by ourselves as well and see what happens.”

(Photo Courtesy of IndyCar - Chris Jones)

(Photo Courtesy of IndyCar – Chris Jones)

Luca Filippi – #19 Boy Scouts of America

“Driving at night was a new experience for sure. Running in the dark on an oval in an Indy car was new to me, it wasn’t easy but it was exciting. I had to set some references and learn. It’s a different vision and different sort of environment that you find out there.
“Today, I felt more confident and we had a solid session. We had more things to try and also myself, I’m also learning, especially in traffic. So far I’m enjoying it.
“It was nice to have two days of testing here because every time you learn something new it’s always good to sleep on it and the day after it’s already more conventional and everything comes a little more automatic, maybe not as much as I’d like but I’m still happy and positive. I definitely feel that we are going in the right direction.”

R.E. Griesemer Gets Fired Up With Jonathan Byrd’s Racing

Jonathan Byrd’s Racing logo

Greenwood, IN – Jonathan Byrd’s Racing, having recently signed on with Dale Coyne Racing in support of Conor Daly’s rookie IndyCar campaign, and to bring Bryan Clauson to his 3rd Indianapolis 500 in the seat of the Dale Coyne/Jonathan Byrd’s Racing #88, is pleased to introduce another supporter in the form of the R.E. Griesemer, Inc.

R.E. Griesemer, Inc. (www.regriesemer.com), a returning sponsor for the Jonathan Byrd’s Racing Indy 500 entry, is a Fire Protection contractor that has been installing fire sprinkler systems throughout the state of Indiana since 1976.   With a reputation for excellence with many general contractors, devlopers, and facility owners, their expertise is varied and includes providing customized fire protection as well as service and inspections for commercial, retail, industrial, and distribution facilities.

Bill Powlen, President of R.E. Griesemer says “We are extremely happy to continue our long time support of Bryan Clauson by again being a contributing sponsor for his Jonathan Byrd Racing’s entry in the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500.”

Bryan Clauson added: “Bill and R.E. Griesemer have been tremendous supporters of short track racing in general and myself in particular for many years, and I couldn’t be happier to once again bring them to the biggest stage in racing.  It means so much to me to be able to connect the world of short track racing and its supporters to Indy, and I’m thrilled that Bill and company are continuing to support our program.”

Adding to Bryan’s sentiments, team principal David Byrd offered his thoughts: “Bill Powlen and everybody at R.E. Griesemer have a passion for racing, and they are the type of enthusiastic partner that we love to attract as we continue to build for the long-term with Bryan.  It’s been great getting to know Bill over the last couple of years, and we’re honored to represent yet another Indiana company and to bring them, once again, to the greatest spectacle in racing.”

R.E. Griesemer provides new installation, renovations, and retrofit of existing facilities, as well as protection of office, retail, medical, government, commercial, industrial, distribution, warehouse, newspaper printing, food processing, and cold storage facilities, in addition to wet pipe and dry pipe systems, pre-action and deluge systems, early suppression and fast response sprinklers, in-rack and pick-module fire protection, standpipe and fire hose supply systems, AAFF foam, FM200 and CO2 special hazard suppression systems, electric and diesel driven fire pumps, underground fire mains, and fire protection water storage tanks.

R.E. Griesemer joins a diverse and growing list of supporters that includes Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Vantage Hotels (Lexington Hotels), E&K Construction, Dooling Machine, WHMB TV40, Freedom 95 Radio, Reising Radio Partners, (KORN Country 100.3, QMix 107.3, MOJO 102.9), Tilson HR, VisionAire Jets, Timothy Plan, ComedySportz Indianapolis, the Indy Fuel, B&H Contractors, and Hopegivers International.

Source: Jonathan Byrd’s Racing and Dale Coyne Racing PR

Vantage Hotels Checks In With Jonathan Byrd’s Racing

www.jonathanbyrdsracing.com        @ByrdRacing       www.facebook.com/jonathanbyrdsracing Greenwood, IN – Jonathan Byrd’s Racing, which recently announced a partnership with Dale Coyne Racing that will bring Bryan Clauson to the Indianapolis 500 as the centerpiece of his “Chasing 200 Tour,” while also putting Conor Daly in a full-time IndyCar seat for the 2016 season, is pleased to announce a…

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Gonzalez Impresses With First Top 10 Finish/ Ninth Place Result Keeps Coyne in Leaders Circle

SONOMA, Ca. – Tristan Vautier and Rodolfo Gonzalez came together to form the Dale Coyne Racing driver partnership for the final time in the 2015 season in for the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma.  Neither driver had turned laps on the 2.385-mile natural terrain road circuit with the current aero kits and a new Firestone tire compound that made consistently fast times difficult.

Rodolfo Gonzalez got up to speed fairly quickly on Friday during the lengthy, 3.5 hour test session, but it was not until race morning that he felt he had a top ten car.  The flowing, high speed nature of the Sonoma Raceway track was to his liking, but in qualifying he had the poor luck of being behind Jack Hawksworth when he lost an engine.  This caused Gonzalez to slip in the oil on his fast lap.  Team data confirmed he was on a quick enough lap to transfer into the top 12, but the slippery conditions in the final corner resulted in him running wide and losing his fastest time.  This gave him a 24th starting position.

Morning warm up was particularly encouraging for Gonzalez as he noted how great the car drove after the 30 minute session.  The team knew that passing on track is very difficult at Sonoma and had a strong strategy in mind from the drop of the green flag.

Gonzalez drove a mistake free race and had worked his way up to the middle of the pack after only 25 laps.  A timely yellow just after his last pit stop put him in the top 12 for the final stint of the race.  Despite battling with series veterans Tony Kanaan and Juan Pablo Montoya, Gonzalez kept cool and moved up to ninth in the closing laps.  This finish gives Gonzalez his career best Verizon IndyCar Series finish in his sixth start.

“I am really happy with the result.  I think we got absolutely everything out of the car and the team today,” said Gonzalez.  “I want to give a big thanks to the team and to Dale Coyne Racing.  They have made me feel at home all season and helped me adapt and learn as much as possible about the series.  A special thanks goes out to Dale (Coyne) because he is a dream maker and he made my dream of being an IndyCar driver come true.”

The weekend was particularly important for the Coyne team because the No. 18 entry was just 13 points behind the No. 4 entry in the fight for the top 22 entrant points position and the lucrative Leaders Circle program.  “We knew coming in we had to beat Coletti by 7 spots, and Rodolfo did a great job beating him by 8 spots and 3 points to keep us in the top 22 for 2016,” said Team Owner Dale Coyne.

Tristan Vautier made his second Verizon IndyCar Series start this weekend having previously raced in the 2013 season.  Finding competitive pace took some time on Friday when he nearly dipped into the 1:17 second times with the rest of the field.  Vautier was unable to translate this into faster times on the softer tires during qualifying and started the race 23rd.

Vautier was not as lucky as his teammate as contact around the halfway point of the race knocked the right rear out of alignment.  His pace was not competitive after that and he was forced to make several extra pit stops in order to make sure the car would be safe to finish the race.  Vautier was able to hang in there and finish in three laps down in 23rd position.

The Dale Coyne Racing team will have just a short time to recover from a grueling 2015 Verizon IndyCar Season before turning the page and beginning to prepare for next season.  Testing will begin this fall in preparation for a return to historic Road America and to help with Honda HPD aero kit changes.  The 2016 season schedule will be announced in the coming weeks at which time teams can begin to outline their  complete plans for next year.  Fans can follow along with all off season news at www.dalecoyneracing.com and across the many social media outlets.

 

Coyne Drivers Both Quick and Comfortable at Pocono Raceway

Coyne Drivers Both Quick and Comfortable at Pocono Raceway

LONG POND, Pa. – After a two week break for competitive action, the Dale Coyne Racing team loaded up the trucks and headed to Pocono Raceway for the ABC Supply 500.  The final 500 mile race of the season provided an extra challenge to drivers and engineers alike due to its unique design.  Its three turn layout with each turn having a different amount of banking makes race setup difficult.

As has been commonplace on oval tracks this season, the event was reduced to a two day schedule with only one practice session before qualifying.  For this reason, most laps were dedicated to race setup since starting at the front of the field on a superspeedway is no guarantee of race day success.

Tristan Vautier spent his 26th birthday in the No. 19 Boy Scouts of America car on Saturday and qualified 13th after a strong 14th place showing in the first practice session.

Vautier’s race started strong as he passed two cars in the first seven laps and appeared to be ready to take the battle to the top 10.  However, an untimely caution on lap 29 right after his first pit stop dropped him back 20th position and gave him the opportunity to go off cycle to the rest of the field.  Having more fuel left as the second stops came, this strategy vaulted Vautier up to third position.  Once he did pit several laps later, he was put back to the end of the lead lap.

Vautier saw his race end just before the halfway point when a two car battle became three and he ran out of track on the inside of turn three.  With the others likely not knowing he was inside of them, Vautier was forced into the grass and the rear of the car washed out.  He smacked the wall and was forced to retire.  He finished in 21st position.

“I had a big run, obviously it’s three wide so it’s a bit tough.  I felt like I had a run, I was almost all the way alongside if not fully alongside,” recalled Vautier.  “I obviously feel bad, (Graham Rahal) is a championship contender for Honda, so it’s always tough and you always have to be the bad guy in this kind of story.”

Pippa Mann made her second career IndyCar start at Pocono for Dale Coyne Racing and put the No. 18 car 17th place on the starting grid.  Not having spent much time on a qualifying setup, Mann’s season best qualifying effort was even more impressive.

While her teammate had a strong start to his race, Mann had a mechanical issue that brought her to pit road after only 9 laps.  The car experienced an electrical issue and she spent 17 laps on pit road while her crew remedied the situation.  Mann continued to run quick laps to earn as many points as possible for the entry and, with the race’s high attrition rate, finished in 13th position.

The final race of the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series takes place at the 2.385-mile natural-terrain road course of Sonoma Raceway.  Coyne drivers have had some success at this track with Justin Wilson finishing second in 2013.  The 2015 series champion will be crowned live on NBCSN at 4:00 PM ET.  The race broadcast can also be heard on Sirius 212/XM 209.

 

Mid-Ohio Reports – Vautier and Gonzalez

Vautier’s Charge from Last to Sixth Highlight Mid-Ohio Weekend

LEXINGTON, Ohio – After three consecutive oval races, the Verizon IndyCar Series and Dale Coyne Racing drivers Tristan Vautier and Rodolfo Gonzalez headed to Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for the Honda Indy 200.  Vautier made his second IndyCar Series start at the 2.258-mile natural terrain road course and Gonzalez made his first.

With Mid-Ohio being such a high commitment course for drivers, having confidence in the car’s grip is key to putting in fast laps.  Both Gonzalez and Vautier pushed hard during practices to get the most out of the higher downforce Honda HPD aero kit, but it didn’t translate to the starting positions the team hoped to achieve.  Gonzalez started the race in 22nd position and Vautier started 24th.

Just 2 laps into the race, contact brought out a caution period and Dale Coyne Racing took the opportunity to get both cars off of the harder black Firestone tires and get off strategy to the leaders.  This decision paid off for Tristan Vautier as he cycled to the front when the leaders come in for their first stop.  This put Vautier in the lead of the race, a position he held for nearly a dozen laps.  He was forced to come in for fuel before another yellow came and he was relegated to 20th in the field.

Ultimately, sticking to the alternate strategy worked because he was able to do his last stop with 30 laps remaining.  He would have been very close to running out of fuel, but a final caution period allowed him to hold on to his sixth place finish.

“Coming home sixth today is great for me and for the team,” said Vautier.  “I had a blast out there.  I was able to put in some very good lap times while saving some fuel.  It was great to be able to lead some laps with such a good race car.  (The team) is a small group of great people and I am having a blast this year.  Overall, it was a great end to our race weekend.”

Rodolfo Gonzalez was on the same strategy as his teammate and nearly was able to reap the same reward.  However, contact with another car in the first dozen laps upset the balance of the No. 18 car and he was not able to do much to maintain the strong position the strategy put him in.  While a 21st place finish is not what he had hoped for, he was able to do some running in the top 5 where he held his own against series veterans Justin Wilson and Simon Pagenaud.

The next two weekends will see no competitive action for the series and then back to back races will cap off an fast paced 2015 season.  The final races of the season will be at Pocono Raceway and Sonoma Raceway.  Coverage of the ABC Supply 500 begins at 2:00 PM ET on August 23 on NBCSN.  Audio coverage can be found on the IMS Radio Network on Sirius 212/XM 209.

 

Vautier and Mann Milwaukee Post Race Notes

Vautier Perseveres in Milwaukee’s High Attrition, Finishes 16th

WEST ALLIS, Wis. – Back to back July short oval track races started this weekend at the Milwaukee IndyFest with the ABC Supply Co. Inc. Wisconsin 250.  The historic one mile track has the distinction of being the oldest operating motor speedway in the world and has hosted a variety of races over its history.

Pippa Mann made her first Verizon IndyCar start at the Milwaukee Mile this weekend and Tristan Vautier made his second.  Both drivers have experience racing at the venue in the Mazda Road to Indy Series with Vautier taking the 2012 Indy Lights win at the speedway.

The condensed weekend schedule required drivers to qualify and race on the same day, a first for the series this season.  Tristan Vautier qualified the No. 19 Boy Scouts of America Honda 20th after getting up to speed quickly in practice and logging the 16th fastest time prior to qualifying.

During the first stint of the race, Vautier battled his way up to second position as the leaders began to make their first pit stops.  He was unable to capitalize on this track position before his fuel tank ran low and required his stop.  The leaders of the race ran some blistering laps shortly after this and put Vautier a lap down.

Despite the team’s best efforts to get Vautier back on the lead lap, the caution periods didn’t come and he was forced to battle at the back of the field.  In a race that saw a very large number of cars retire for a variety of issues, Vautier finished strong and earned a 16th place finish.  This betters his previous finish from 2013, his only other start at Milwaukee.

Pippa Mann could have benefited from more practice laps to dial in the car before qualifying and was unable to put the No. 18 any higher than 23rd on the starting grid.  Unfortunately, the same handling issues that prevented her from getting up to speed forced an early retirement and a 24th place finish.

The 13th round of the Verizon IndyCar season starts on Friday with the race being run on Saturday night, July 18th.  Mann and Vautier aim to improve on their strong runs in Milwaukee in the Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway.  The race will air live on NBCSN at 8:00 PM EST and can also be heard on the IMS Radio Network Sirius 212/XM 209.

 

DCR Fontana Race Notes

Mann Earns Career Best IndyCar Finish in Fontana

FONTANA, Calif. – Traditionally a late season race, Auto Club Speedway hosted this weekend’s MAVTV 500 in the late June sun. Tristan Vautier continued his string of races for Dale Coyne Racing in the No. 19 Boy Scouts of America car and Pippa Mann returned to the No. 18 after driving in earlier superspeedway races for DCR.

Pippa Mann officially made her second start at Auto Club Speedway, but was not in the race terribly long in 2013. This lack of track time made her feel like it was her first race in Fontana. She put her car 22nd on the grid and kept an eye towards consistently fast speeds over long stints during the race.

Mann battled hard in a group of cars near the rear of the field for the first half of the race and the team did well to have her on the lead lap towards the latter stages. She had a great race car for the long runs and hoped this would pay off. The end of the race saw several cautions and those short stints prevented her from grabbing a top 10 finish.

However, Mann did earn the best Verizon IndyCar Series finish of her career by bringing the car home in 13th place. “I’m glad to get a good result for these guys,” said Mann. “The team did a great job improving the car for me during the pit stops. The car was better and better as the race went on.”

Tristan Vautier was particularly impressive in Friday’s practice sessions and challenged to crack the top half of the field all day. He wasn’t quite as fast in qualifying due to a conservative setup and a focus on the long, 500 mile race on Saturday. He started in 20th position.

Vautier had a very strong start to the race on track by gaining six positions and running as high as 14th. Unfortunately, a mistake by the young Frenchman coming into the pit box on his first stop ruined his day. He made a mistake selecting first gear and that propelled his car into the inside front tire changer, Oren Trower.

This mishap put Vautier several laps down and didn’t allow him to show the car he had under him. He finished the race in 17th place. “We had a great car,” noted Vautier. “In the first stint we went from P20 to P14 and the car felt really good. The mistake happened so early in the race it just ruined our race.”

The Verizon IndyCar Series will return to its Midwest home for the next few rounds of the championship as they race at the famed Milwaukee Mile on July 12 and Iowa Speedway on July 18. The series will have a unique schedule in Milwaukee that will see drivers qualify and race on the same day. The race will be shown live on NBCSN at 5:00 PM ET and can also be heard on Sirius 212 and XM 209.

DCR Toronto Race Notes

Rodolfo “Speedy” Gonzalez Earns His Nickname in Toronto

TORONTO – Dale Coyne Racing drivers Rodolfo Gonzalez and Tristan Vautier returned to action this weekend in the Honda Indy Toronto just two weeks removed from another street race in Detroit. The circuit was a familiar one for Vautier, having raced there in the past, but was a new experience for Gonzalez due to his limited racing in North America.

The 1.75 mile street circuit in downtown Toronto, Ontario allowed drivers to turn more practice laps than it did for last year’s doubleheader race. Since he had never driven in Toronto, having a practice session canceled was not to Gonzalez’s advantage going into qualifying. He started in 23rd position.

Rodolfo Gonzalez went for an alternate strategy early in the race, staying out during the first caution when most others pitted. This put him on the same strategy as Castroneves and it, ultimately, didn’t pay off for either of them.

For the Verizon IndyCar Series rookie, being able to run with the faster cars in the series was great experience. Gonzalez was able to keep Pagenaud behind him in 6th place for several laps during the middle of the race. Towards the end, he led the race for six laps, but knew he would have to pit one more time. Gonzalez held eventual race winner Josef Newgarden at bay before being forced to pit for fuel.

“I think we took a big risk on our strategy and, in the end, it didn’t pay off because we we got that second caution so quickly and it screwed us up a little bit,” said Gonzalez. “It was certainly fun. It is only my third race and to be spending any time leading is great.” After his last pit stop he would end up in 18th place.

Tristan Vautier started the race 21st after an engine issue in qualifying kept him from a strong, mid-pack qualifying effort. At the race’s start, Vautier was battling Coletti going into Turn 3 and, being on the outside, he had no choice but to follow off course when Coletti braked too late. From the back of the field, Vautier did his best to make up positions, but fuel saving in the final stint prevented anything better than his 17th place finish.

The Verizon IndyCar Series will take their first weekend off of competition since the beginning of May this next weekend before heading to the West coast for the MAVTV 500 in Fontana, California. For the past several years, this race has been the season finale, but it has been moved up in the schedule this year. A Saturday afternoon, Southern California race in June should provide lots of challenges to all competitors. The race will be shown live on NBCSN at 4:00 PM ET on June 27.

DCR Texas Race Report

Pippa Mann Finishes a Solid Race in Texas

FORT WORTH, Texas – After driving two of the three Dale Coyne Racing entries at the Indianapolis 500 this year, Pippa Mann and Tristan Vautier were tapped to pilot the two Honda powered cars for the Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway this weekend for DCR.

Coyne has had success at TMS having won the race with Justin Wilson in 2012.  The 1.455 mile oval has 24 degree banking in the turns and provides unique superspeedway racing for the Verizon IndyCar Series.  Vautier and Mann each made their second career start at TMS this weekend.

Pippa Mann and her engineers opted to utilize the limited practice time to get the car setup for race conditions and didn’t even do a qualifying simulation during practice.  She qualified the No. 18 Honda in 22nd place.

Mann made use of this race setup to make a charge up the field early on.  She moved up to 18th place in the first 35 laps of the race and ran as high as 13th in the race.  The long run setup the engineers put on her car wasn’t enough to keep her running in that position and she eventually went a lap down to the leaders.  Mann’s experience on big oval tracks allowed her to hang tough with the other lapped cars and she crossed the finish line in 17th place.

“Overall I think we had a pretty solid race,” said Mann.  “We were hoping to have a slightly better car after how well we ran last night in practice.  I had a lot of confidence coming in to tonight but we were just that little bit off and that hurt our result some.”

Tristan Vautier started the weekend strong by turning the 8th fastest in the first practice session but couldn’t translate that performance to qualifying.  He started the race in 16th position.

While Mann’s initial pace was very good, Vautier was even stronger.  He jumped 5 positions in the first three laps and held 11th position for several dozen laps.  As his tires started to go off, he shuffled back a bit, but did run as high as 5th place as he was able to go 55 laps on his first stint.

Shortly after the halfway point of the race, Vautier was forced to retire with a mechanical issue to the right rear suspension.  He finished in 20th place.

The Honda Indy Toronto race will play host to the 10th race of the season on June 14.  The race, previously a double header, is moved up in the season schedule to accommodate the Pan Am games being hosted in Toronto in July.  The 11-turn, 1.75 mile street race will air live on NBCSN at 3:00 PM ET.

 

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