Newton, IA (July 7, 2018) – Dale Coyne Racing’s rookie, Zachary Claman De Melo, had his first taste of a short oval aboard an Indy car on Saturday during practice and qualifying for the Iowa Corn 300. Unfortunately for the #19 Paysafe driver, it wasn’t the easiest of days as he qualified 20th for Sunday’s race.
While Claman De Melo has prior experience at the 7/8-mile track in an Indy Lights car, he deemed it a completely different experience in an Indy car.
“Today, the #19 Paysafe car isn’t quite going our way. Like in Texas, we didn’t have a great qualifying, but we were there in the race and that’s kind of the plan for here as well. It’s much different here in an Indy car versus an Indy Lights car. It’s probably the place where I’ve felt the biggest difference so I’m trying to wrap my head around everything and trying to figure out how to work the car here. It’s a bumpy track so it’s difficult to run both the high and low line, you just have to find a spot that works for you. It’s also tough to follow here, so we’ll see how tomorrow goes and hope for the best.”
During his two-lap qualifying, the rookie registered a first lap of 174.911 mph with a second lap of 173.771 mph for a two-lap average of 174.339 mph.
The Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway will take place on Sunday, July 8 with at 1:40pm local time green flag. The race will be broadcast live on NBCSN from 1:00pm local time (2:00pm ET). and can also be followed live on the Advance Auto Parts IndyCar Radio Network, including SIRIUS/XM 209/214.