St. Petersburg, FL (March 11, 2018) – Dale Coyne Racing’s Zachary Claman De Melo summed up his Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg race on Sunday as a learning experience after taking the checkered flag 17th in a race that saw him run as high as fourth aboard his #19 The Paysafe Car.
Claman De Melo was taking part in only his second Verizon IndyCar Series race this weekend and the first on the 1.8-mile, 14-turn street course in St. Petersburg, but it didn’t show as the rookie showed good pace while battling with the likes of Scott Dixon for seventh place.
The driver of the #19 The Paysafe Car spent a good part of the race in the top ten, running fifth before his last pit stop. However, he would end up 18th following what was supposed to be his final scheduled stop.
Unfortunately for the rookie, a small fuel issue sent him to pit lane with two laps remaining, costing him a couple of positions. He had to settle for 17th.
The race was won by Claman De Melo’s teammate Sebastien Bourdais in the #18 Team SealMaster Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan entry.
The Dale Coyne Racing’s #19 car will be back on track in less than four weeks at the Phoenix Grand Prix on April 7 with Pietro Fittipaldi taking his turn behind the wheel of The Paysafe Car.
Zachary Claman De Melo – #19 The Paysafe Car
“It was a good race. At the beginning we were running fourth for quite a while. The cautions didn’t fall our way at the beginning, but we had a good pace. We were probably missing a little bit to the guys in front of us. Although, I did have a good battle with Dixon and kept him behind me for a while. I’m happy we held on. It’s unfortunate that a small fuel issue at the end cost us couple of positions but it’s part of the game. It was all a learning experience today.”