Bourdais Makes Strong Comeback for Dale Coyne Racing at Iowa Speedway
After a lengthy rain delay at Iowa Speedway, the Iowa 300 finally got underway late Saturday night. The ENEOS-sponsored Dale Coyne Racing drivers both had good runs with Sebastien Bourdais (#18 Team SealMaster Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan) moving up from 21st on the grid to finish ninth, and Santino Ferrucci (#19 Cly-Del Manufacturing Dale Coyne Racing) making impressive moves to place 12th
It was Sebastien Bourdais’ 200th career IndyCar start and it would see him climbing from 21st on the starting grid to a ninth place finish on the 7/8-mile Iowa Speedway oval in Newton, IA. Bourdais had his lowest qualifying position of the season, but drove a smart and deliberate race by slowly but methodically working his way through the field to earn his sixth top-ten finish of the season. Bourdais earned 23 points for his effort and moved back into the top-10 in the championship standings with 255 points.
“I found a couple of options on the track that seemed to work really well for the No. 18 SealMaster Honda. I started to pick off people and get good runs out of Turn 2. That was really the key to passing a bunch of guys. Before, I just didn’t have enough front to be able to do that. Then, all of a sudden, I had it and we gained a bunch of positions. I’m really proud of the SealMaster crew, they did a great job in the pits and overall it was a good result from where we started.”
Rookie DCR teammate Santino Ferrucci made his first short oval start on Saturday night at Iowa Speedway, but his lack of experience didn’t show with the driver of the #19 Cly-Del Manufacturing entry putting in an impressive run before finally taking the checkered flag in 12th position.
When the race got underway after a lengthy rain delay, Ferrucci impressed from the green flag by passing six cars at the start to move into sixth place. Once the race settled into its pace, the rookie battled with Alexander Rossi to take fifth place on Lap 75. He then continued to fight with the former Indy 500 winner and defended his position before passing veteran Takuma Sato for fourth place on Lap 101.
Unfortunately, Ferrucci’s car got loose as the race went on. While he still had good battles with his competitors, made up positions on the restarts, and ran in the top 10 for the majority of the night, he would finish 12th when all was said done.
“For my first short oval I think it was definitely a tough one for us. I do believe we had some of the best moves of the race, especially on some of the restarts,” expressed the rookie. “We had a super-solid car in the first stint. But for the rest of the stints, towards the end of them, the #19 Cly-Del Manufacturing car was really loose and hard to drive. From there I struggled to keep it on the track in Turns 3 and 4, so we just managed what we could until the end.
Round 13 of the 2019 NTT IndyCar Series season will be the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio, July 26-28 on the 2.258-mile, 13-turn Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course permanent road course in Lexington, Ohio.