INDIANAPOLIS, May 12 — Kris Wright overcame several challenges to finish a strong sixth in the second half of the Pro Mazda doubleheader Saturday morning at the world-famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Wright, of Pittsburgh, started 12th in the 25-lap race in the black and red No. 78 car prepared by BN Racing and sponsored by iHeartRadio and MasterTech. The race, round six for the second level of the Mazda Road to Indy ladder system, which is presented by Cooper Tires, was held on IMS’ 2.439-mile, 14-turn road course that incorporates part of the facility’s oval.
“We had a lot of things to deal with,” Wright said after Saturday’s race. “First, we had some engine issues, and I was down on power quite a bit. That put us maybe three-tenths of a second off the other drivers.”
Wright had an amazing start though, advancing from 12th to fifth in the first turn on the first lap.
On lap 16 of the 25-lap race, however, Nikita Lastochkin hit Wright when he was attempting to pass him in Turn 7, which bent the left-rear wishbone (a suspension piece) of Wright’s car. Lastochkin received a drive-through penalty for avoidable contact for the incident, but that didn’t help Wright at the time.
“My car went super-loose after that,” Wright related. “I was dealing with that while short-shifting because the engine was running rough, but I was still able to keep my nose clean and finish while other drivers were crashing and getting penalties.”
Wright’s lap times were competitive despite his challenges. His best lap was lap 10 at an average speed of 107.499 miles per hour, which was the eighth-fastest lap run in the field of 14 and only 0.6453 off the fastest lap of the race.
“It was a good day today,” he summarized. “I love Indianapolis; I wish we could race there every single race; I just love that place.”
Wright plans to compete in the Pro Mazda races at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis., June 22-24 too.
He also races in the IMSA Prototype Challenge Presented by Mazda series, where he is leading the point standings in the top class, Le Mans Prototype 3. His next event in that series is July 6-8 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario.
More information is available on Wright's Web site at KrisWrightMotorsports.com. Fans can also follow him on Facebook at Kris Wright Racing.
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