When the 4:40 p.m. ET green flag flew on the Allied Building Products Grand Prix of St. Pete, the 12-car field handled the treacherous first turn with no issues as Telitz and O’Ward maintained first and second place while Tan managed to pass Jake Eidson for fourth. One lap later, the series sophomore overtook Nico Jamin, out-braking him into turn one. From there on, the team pulled away and maintained their lock on the podium spots achieving the team’s first Pro Mazda Championship 1-2-3 finish.
The Cooper Tires and Mazda engines performed flawlessly and so did Team Pelfrey, as Aaron Telitz finished the 40-minute race with the first victory of his Pro Mazda Championship career. Pato O’Ward of San Antonio, Tex. finished the race with the fastest lap with a 1:12.8457 lap.
The team heads to Barber Motorsports Park in Leeds, Ala. for rounds three and four of the season, April 22-24. You can watch all of the action in Alabama by downloading the Road to INDY TV app or by visiting RoadtoIndy.TV. To stay up to date with the latest news about Team Pelfrey, visit Team-Pelfrey.com or follow us on Twitter @TeamPelfrey.
Patricio “Pato” O’Ward (No. 80 Gap Guard Team Pelfrey Mazda) Started second, finished second: “I think for sure it was a really good race, and great practice for up and coming races. I tried to make it happen in the beginning, but I pushed the tires too hard and couldn’t succeed to win. I think it’s great practice for the team that all three cars were fantastic the whole weekend, and hats off to Aaron. He did great. I am really looking forward to Barber and hopefully find some sponsors to continue the season. ”
Weiron Tan (No. 81 Resorts World Team Pelfrey Mazda) Started fifth, finished third: “I think we made a fantastic start. Team Pelfrey did a really good job. This is the first time we have had an all three podium sweep, and I couldn’t be happier. Consistency is key, you know, coming in fifth yesterday and third today, that is still good. There is a lot more for us to learn as a team, and we just have to keep looking forward. Barber is quite a whiles away, but I am really looking forward to it. I think we got a strong package there as shown in pre-season testing.
Aaron Telitz (No. 82 Rice Lake Weighing Systems Team Pelfrey Mazda) Started first, finished first: ” I remembered how the race was yesterday going 40 minutes instead of 30. I knew that since we were starting on new tires I did not want to burn my tires off too quick in the beginning. I was probably holding Pato off a little bit in the beginning, but I knew what I had to do. It is awesome to get my first win in Pro Mazda the first weekend. We have a lot of speed, and just to be able to put it together the first race I literally could not be happier. I could not have imagined a better weekend. “