Helio Castroneves as he waits to make a run at the pole for the Bombardier Learjet 550 to be broadcast on ESPN at 10:00 pm EST, Saturday night, Texas Motor Speedway. Image Credit: Andy Sallee (2008)
Tougher Time In Texas For The T-Team Ten
Qualifications of Round 7 of 18 in Texas for the Bombardier Learjet 550 were pretty tough for the Transition Team Ten. Unlike the good representation of having five drivers make it onto the grid in five of the top ten positions, only one driver was able to crack the top ten.
Will Power driving for KV Racing Technology/AU-Australia was only able to notch eighth in the grid, followed next closest by his teammate Oriol Servia in position sixteen.
Mario Dominguez in the PCM pits just before his qualification run for the Bombardier Learjet 550. “I am very happy with our result today. I think this is the first time in my career that I have been so happy to be 24th. However, we are [far] from satisfied and we still have a lot of work to do. We definitely are making improvements to the Visit Mexico City Car and I am looking forward to the race tomorrow.” stated Mario after the qualification session at Texas Motor Speedway. Image Credit: Pacific Coast Motorsports
In his qualification run, Mario and PCM were able to place the car 24th on the grid right behind Justin Wilson of Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing/McDonalds and ahead of onetime INDY 500 winner, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing driver, Buddy Rice. This was positive, since all of the practice times that his Dallara was able to post would have placed his car 28th in the field of 28 cars.
The elaborate helmet of EJ Viso. Viso qualified 28th in a 28 car field. Image Credit: Andy Sallee (2008)
The balance of the T-Team Ten fared as follows:
Pos. Driver - Team
18 Graham Rahal - Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing
20 Enrique Bernoldi - Conquest Racing
21 Jamie Camara - Conquest Racing
22 Mario Moraes - Dale Coyne Racing
23 Justin Wilson - Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing
26 Bruno Junqueira - Dale Coyne Racing
28 EJ Viso - HVM Racing
This is the kind of performance that most of the established IRL pundits had prophesied … a bunch of “Rookies” cruising along at the bottom of the grid.
At the one-third point in the championship points season after the Milwaukee Mile, we find the T-Team Ten holding on and hoping for some road courses to pop-up in the schedule. Oriol Servia is leading the points needed for “Rookie” of the year (140) followed hotly by IRL Established Team driver, Hideki Mutoh Andretti Green Racing/Panasonic (131) and Oriol’s KV Racing Technology teammate, Will Power (130). The overall leader in points one-third the way through the season is currently held by the 2008 INDY 500 winner, Scott Dixon of Target Chip Ganassi Racing at 234 points
Points Standings Here>>
... notes from The EDJE