Phoenix, AZ (April 7, 2018) – Dale Coyne Racing rookie Pietro Fittipaldi’s night ended much earlier than he had hoped for at the Desert Diamond West Valley Casino Phoenix Grand Prix on Saturday after a tap with the wall took him out of the race on lap 41.
Fittipaldi, who had started 10th, was running strong laps as quick and even faster than then leader Sebastien Bourdais after only losing one position in the opening laps of the 250-lap event.
Unfortunately for Fittipaldi, turbulence from the group of cars in front of him surprised him as he caught up to them and it sent him into the slicker part of the track and towards the wall between turns 3 and 4.
“We were running well, but then I caught a group of cars as I ran a bit hard. There was a lot of turbulence, and with that group of cars I wasn’t expecting that much difference, and the Paysafe car just went away from me. Once you get in the gray, you just go straight into the wall,” he explained. “I’m disappointed for everyone at Dale Coyne Racing. The team has done a good job, I wish I could have given them a better result, but it definitely was a learning experience.”
Fittipaldi will be back with the team for the Indianapolis Grand Prix and Indianapolis 500 in May. Zachary Claman De Melo will be returning to the cockpit of the #19 Paysafe car next weekend in Long Beach as well as at Barber Motorsports Park in two weeks.
The Dale Coyne Racing team will be back in action from April 13 – 15 at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.