Andretti Autosport WWTR Race Two Debrief
 August 22, 2021| 
  • Team News
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COOPER TIRES INDY LIGHTS OVAL CHALLENGE OF ST. LOUIS
RACE 2 DEBRIEF
08.21.2021
 
 
An intense end to a doubleheader weekend for Andretti Autosport’s Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires team. Polesitter Kyle Kirkwood led the field of 12 to green holding off championship competitor David Malukas until caution for debris on Lap 31. At Lap 34, a mandatory red flag was displayed as all competitors were required to come to pit lane to change both right side tires.
 
As the field took the restart on Lap 37, Kirkwood had his mirrors full with a charging Malukas. They ran side by side for nearly three laps before Malukas took the position. Devlin DeFrancesco started his second oval race in Indy Lights and showed impressive speed to make moves up front from seventh to fifth. After a difficult qualifying, Robert Megennis started today’s race 12th and moved his way into seventh in the opening laps. Danial Frost was poised for a podium finish before a right-front tire went down, ending the podium run for the rookie. Similar to Race 1, the Indy Lights Race Director called an early end to Race 2 due to tire-wear concerns.

The series heads to Portland International Raceway in three weeks time for a doubleheader event to kick off back-to-back west coast events.

 

KYLE KIRKWOOD
No. 28 ROAD TO INDY / COOPER TIRES / CONTRACTION CONTRACTORS CLUB DALLARA
START FINISH CHAMPIONSHIP
1 2 2ND / 368 PTS.
OF NOTE: Captured his ninth podium of his Indy Lights career // Led the most laps of Race 2 [38 laps]
"There were a lot of factors there at the end that would’ve allowed us to win. I don’t know why but they [HMD Motorsports] were a bit quicker than us in a straight line. I don’t why that adds up. Which that was the reason why I was able to follow so close behind by not make a pass, but he [David Malukas] is able to follow behind and make runs on me. We all are scratching our heads right now. I think we had a better race car. As the race progressed, we were getting faster and faster and I was able to run him down. I actually backed off there a lap or two before that last caution to try and get some clean air to figure out what the groove was then run him back down. I had to deal with lap traffic on our first ‘stage’ if you will there. Then the second run, we went to caution right as he caught traffic, which was pretty unfortunate for us. There were just a lot of circumstances that kept us from winning this weekend."

 

DEVLIN DEFRANCESCO
No. 17 POWERTAP DALLARA

Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport
START FINISH CHAMPIONSHIP
7 5 4TH / 245 PTS.
OF NOTE: Earned his eighth top-five finish of 2021
"The No. 17 PowerTap machine was good today in Race 2. It was a shame that they had to end it early again as I totally think we could’ve kept moving up. I think we maximized our result after a poor qualifying. The PowerTap Andretti Steinbrenner guys did a great job and we moved forward in both races so we definitely have the speed to be up there. It’s just a shame that something that happened in qualifying hampered us but that’s the way it goes sometimes. We will press forward to Portland."

 

ROBERT MEGENNIS
No. 27 ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT DALLARA
START FINISH CHAMPIONSHIP
12 7 9TH / 225 PTS.
OF NOTE: Gained five positions at the start of the race
"I had an awesome start. I moved up five spots in the first lap. The car wasn’t quite where we wanted it. We were fighting for fifth but the yellow came out right as I went for the move. We’ll take the momentum and move on to Portland."
DANIAL FROST
No. 68 DEN-JET DALLARA
START FINISH CHAMPIONSHIP
3 10 6TH / 244 PTS.
OF NOTE: Was contending for a top five when his right-front tire went down
"We did our best to try and figure out what we could learn from yesterday’s race to make the balance better for today. We obviously found it and were much closer to the leading pack. We started third and I had a competitive car for the top positions. Unfortunately at the end, the right-front tire went away from us, so we couldn’t finish the race and fell back towards the end. It wasn’t the result we wanted and now we will head onto Portland."

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