JHR drivers come through rain-delayed Iowa qualifying
Newton, IowaJuly 22, 2023
Juncos Hollinger Racing had to wait for its qualifying chance ahead of this weekend’s Hy-Vee Homefront 250 and Hy-Vee One Step 250 races at Iowa Speedway after inclement weather delayed the hot lap qualifying session earlier today.
Callum Ilott and Agustín Canapino had to wait for almost two hours before they could get onto the Iowa asphalt after heavy rainfall drenched the 0.875-mile oval this morning.
When the session did get underway, Callum qualified P24 for this evening’s opening NTT INDYCAR SERIES race, while team-mate Agustín’s time placed him P25. Tomorrow, Callum will line up from P24 again and Agustín will be a place ahead for race two.
In a quickfire qualifying format, the drivers took to the ‘World’s Fastest Short Track’ one-by-one for two warm-up laps. Two green-flag hot laps then decided the starting order – lap one speeds setting the race one grid, and lap two pace deciding the race two grid.
Agustín was the first JHR driver on track and the Argentine quickly and confidently got up to speed before posting a lap one speed of 175.044mph. The rookie then stepped up his pace once more, recording 175.563mph on his final hot lap.
Moments later, it was Callum’s turn on track. The Briton started strongly, recording 175.548mph on his first green flag attempt. His lap two speed also remained consistent, passing the checkered flag with an average of 175.551mph.
“I wish we were a little bit quicker on the one-lap pace, but hopefully we will have a good race later tonight and make it work.”
Callum Ilott said:
“It was not an overly impressive qualifying, as I will be starting from P24 for both races this weekend. However, it seems to be a similar situation to last year in Iowa, where we made our way through the field during the races. I wish we were a little bit quicker on the one-lap pace, but hopefully we will have a good race later tonight and make it work.”
“It was a good first qualifying effort from myself here at Iowa, and I am pleased with my performance.”
Agustín Canapino said:
“It was a good first qualifying effort from myself here at Iowa, and I am pleased with my performance. We were maybe a little bit off the pace during qualifying, but we have a good chance to have a positive race here today and then tomorrow. They will both be really long races, so anything can happen.”
“We were encouraged by our long runs during practice yesterday, so we are hoping to have two good races.”
Ricardo Juncos said:
“I’m pretty happy overall. We are starting the races near the back of the field, but we have shown strong improvement since yesterday. It is very competitive here, and tyre degradation plays a big role in these types of races.
“We were encouraged by our long runs during practice yesterday, so we are hoping to have two good races. We will see what will happen with the weather and the track this afternoon. I’m confident in our race pace from testing, so I’m looking forward to seeing what we can achieve.”