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Ground-breaking USF2000 team Force Indy announce Myles Rowe as pilot of the No. 99

Myles Rowe, a 20-year-old from Atlanta, Ga., will pilot the No. 99 for Force Indy during the 2021 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship season (Photo Courtesy of Force Indy)

By Steve Wittich

Force Indy, a new and ground-breaking Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship team, announces that Myles Rowe will pilot the team’s No. 99 USF-17 during the upcoming 2021 season.

“We vetted many deserving young men and women and chose Myles based on his ability and performance, inside and outside of the cockpit,” said Force Indy Team Principal Rod Reid. “He understands Force Indy’s mission of building a diverse team of talented individuals. He’s a great fit for the team.”

Rowe, who first developed an interest in motorsport as a four-year-old, won an impressive five of his eight Lucas Oil Formula Car Series race starts. At 20 years of age, Rowe has tested USF2000 machinery on multiple occasions, including for the first time at the Chris Griffis Memorial Test with John Cummiskey Racing.

Myles Rowe at the 2017 Chris Griffis Memorial Test (Photo Courtesy Of Andersen Promotions)

“It’s a blessing for sure. I didn’t expect to get started in open-wheel in this way. It’s definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I’m very grateful for it,” explained two-time Champion Spark Plugs “Search For The Champion” grand prize winner Rowe. “I’ve been working hard for this moment; with all of the practice I’ve put in since I was 12 years old. So, when the opportunity came forth it was a relief, honestly.”

Force Indy is led by principal Rod Reid, a long time motorsports participant and leader of the NXG Youth Motorsports (NXG) initiative. The first three crew members are:

  • Derrick Morris, a native of Indianapolis, Ind., and NXG graduate, was most recently a mechanic for the Indianapolis Marion County Police Department.
  • Fellow NXG alum Stuart Winston Kelly, an Organizational Development degree holder, who builds his own drift cars.
  • Purdue University Mechanical Engineering Technology graduate Mujahid Nadeem Ali. The Montclair, New Jersey native, has been an engineer for Tesla, Fiat Chrysler, and John Deere.

You can follow Myle’s career on the following social media channels – TwitterInstagramFacebook.

You can follow Force Indy’s journey here – WebsiteTwitter InstagramFacebook.

The bottom rung of the Road To Indy Presented by Cooper Tires will be on track for an official test at Barber Motorsports Park on April 4-5, 2021, and the first race event will be held on the same 2.3-mile, 17-turn natural terrain road course from April 15-17, 2021.

Thoughts from Steve

  • It’s great to see Rowe finally get an opportunity to showcase his talent.
  • I checked with a few coaches from the Lucas Oil School Of Racing, and the thoughts were unanimous. Rowe is ‘really good’ and should excel in this opportunity.
  • The addition of Force Indy and Rowe to the Road To Indy grid is a big deal. First, opportunities for the Black community in racing have been lacking. Second, and much more pragmatically, the addition of the team and driver open up INDYCAR and racing to a whole new group of fans and sponsors.

Indy Pro 2000 race abandoned due to conditions and time constraints – will be restarted at a time TBD


Rain falling at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (Photo Courtesy of Steve Wittich – TSO Ladder)

By Steve Wittich

Just before the 14 Indy Pro 2000 entries were about to head from the false grid to pit road, the skies opened up, and it started to pour.

The “Drivers Start Your Engines” command was delayed as track crews dispersed some standing water in Turn 2, Turn 6, and Turn 9.

Teams were informed by race control that the second Surgere Indy Pro 2000 Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio race of the weekend would be reduced from 25 laps to 20 laps (45 minutes to 35 minutes) due to the weather and the schedule constraints.

The command to fire the engines was given at 9:11 am, with all 14 Elite Engine 275hp engines firing.

The field was given two reconnaissance laps before going green.

On the first of two laps, Antoine Comeau, who was due to set 10th, spun in the keyhole. He was able to continue but was told he would need to start at the end of the field.

After the first pace lap, race control announced that the start would be single-file.

As the field came to the front straight, Danial Frost, the fifth car in line, spun. The No. 68 Turn, 3 Motorsport PM-18, didn’t hit anything, but he was forced to take the green flag from the rear oft he field.

The field was given one more lap behind the pace car, getting the green flag on Lap 3, with the clock at 28 minutes.

Pole-sitter Sulaiman wasn’t able to get wowed down headed into Turn 1, going into the gravel trap, getting stuck. Also, missing Turn 1 was DeFrancesco. Going off track before the yellow flag came out as leader Sting Ray Robb got to Turn 2 was the Pabst Racing rookies Colin Kaminsky and Hunter McElrea.

The running order as the field crossed the line to start Lap 3 was: Robb, Parker Thompson (DEForce Racing), Artem Petrov (Juncos Racing), Jacob Abel (Abel Motorsports), Moisés de la Vara (DEForce Racing), Danial Frost (Turn 3 Motorsports), Bob Kaminsky (Pabst Racing), Antoine Comeau (Turn 3 Motorsports), Charles Finelli (Fatboy Racing!), C. Kaminsky, McElrea, DeFrancesco, Sulaiman, and Enders.

After one lap circulating under yellow, the field was shown the red flag, and they came to pit road. The clock stopped with 16 laps or 21 minutes remaining in the race.

Sulaiman, DeFrancesco, McElrea, and C.Kaminsky were all able to get back on track with the help of the AMR INDYCAR Safety Team, with C. Kaminsky on the lead lap, and McElrea, DeFrancesco, and Sulaiman one lap down.

With the NTT INDYCAR® SERIES qualifying next on deck, the race was abandoned, with teams told that the race would continue at a time still to be determined. Teams were told to take their cars back to the Road To Indy paddock and not be impounded, allowing them to work their PM-18s.

The running order when the race was abandoned was:

1 2 Sting Ray Robb Pabst Racing
2 9 Parker Thompson Juncos Racing
3 42 Artem Petrov Juncos Racing
4 51 Jacob Abel Pabst Racing
5 6 Moises de la Vara Abel Motorsports
6 68 Danial Frost DEForce Racing
7 57 Bob Kaminsky Turn 3 Motorsport
8 3 Antoine Comeau DEForce Racing
9 83 Charles Finelli Pabst Racing
10 19 Colin Kaminsky FatBoy Racing
11 18 Hunter McElrea DEForce Racing
12 17 Devlin DeFrancesco Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport
13 8 Manuel Sulaiman DEForce Racing
14 7 Kory Enders DEForce Racing

Barrichello grabs his second straight win, Miller gets best finish, Brooks scores first podium

The Race #2 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship podium on the victory podium at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Photo Courtesy Of Andersen Promotions)

By Steve Wittich

It’s been two races and two trips to victory podium at the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway for Pabst Racing sophomore Eduardo Barrichello. But, the two wins couldn’t have been more different.

Yesterday, the second generation driver led only two laps, while today, he led all 15-laps, facing almost no pressure from his competitors.

“Yes,” said Barrichello when asked if that was his best drive so far, adding that. “It’s really hard to be in first and get a level of concentration good enough to do qual(ification) laps. It’s really, really hard. I figured that I could pull a big enough gap and be a little more comfortable at the start. We did the fastest lap of the race, so we’re really happy.”

The 18-year-old moves into second place in the championship and enters the event’s third race with a 74 point deficit. Before the event began, the gap between the race #2 winner and championship leader was 89 points.

Barrichello’s win is the third on the IMS Road Course for Pabst Racing.

Coming home in second place, his second podium in the last three races was Jack William Miller. The second-generation race made a textbook pass on championship leader Rasmussen. The podium has brought the native Hoosier into a tie for eighth on the championship table.

It was only a matter of time before Christian Brooks found himself on a Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship podium. The Exclusive Autosport rookie has finished in the top five three times before race #2.

Christian Brooks in the Hot Wheels/Chaco Flaco/Bell Helmets sponsored No. 44 from Exclusive Autosport stable on track during a podium run at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Photo Courtesy Of Andersen Promotions)

After his podium, Brooks is now only five points behind Josh Green as the highest-scoring rookie.

At 10:55 am, the voice of race control, Jim Swintal, gave the call for the drivers to start their Elite Engine prepared 2.0L. Engines.

After one pace lap, the all-Brazilian front row of Porto and Barrichello brought the 21 cars to the ‘yard of bricks’ and the green flag.

Porto got a decent start, with Barrichello dropping in behind his fellow Brazilian. From his fourth starting spot, Rasmussen also got a good start, making it four-wide going into Turn 1. It was Barrichello that was the first driver to get to Turn 2, followed by Rasmussen and Miller.

The Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship field goes four-wide into the Turn 1 braking zone at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Photo Courtesy Of Andersen Promotions)

As they got to Turn 7, Miller made a daring pass on Rasmussen to move to second place.

Pole sitter Porto fell down the running order to sixth on the chaotic opening lap.

The running order after a clean first lap was Barrichello, Miller, Rasmussen, Brooks, Reece Gold (Cape Motorsports), Porto, Nolan Siegel (Jay Howard Driver Development), Michael d’Orlando (Cape Motorsports), Max Kaeser (Jay Howard Driver Development), Yuven Sundaramoorthy (Pabst Racing), Cameron Shields (DEForce Racing), Matthew Round-Garrido (Pabst Racing), Simon Sikes (Legacy Autosport), Wyatt Brichacek (Jay Howard Driver Development), Christian Bogle (Jay Howard Driver Development), Kyle Dupell (Cape Motorsports), Josh Green (Cape Motorsports), Prescott Campbell (Exclusive Autosport), Josh Pierson (Exclusive Autosport), Bijoy Garg (Jay Howard Driver Development) and Michael Myers (Legacy Autosport).

On Lap 2, Brooks, who started sixth, was able to get by Rasmussen to grab the final spot on the podium.

Further back in the field, Garg and Dupell disagreed over space in Turn 12, with the Jay Howard Driver Development car falling to last and Dupell coming to pit road.

On Lap 4, Rasmussen, Gold, and Porto were fighting for the fourth spot, with Porto getting by Gold for fifth. Further back in the field, Gold lost places to his teammate d’Orlando and Siegel to fall to eighth.

Barrichello’s lead over Miller to start Lap 5 was 1.3 seconds, with Brooks another 1.6 seconds back.

The battling for 11th, 12th, 13th, and 14th between Kaeser, Green, Sikes, and Round-Garrido was fast and furious, with Kaeser eventually ending the race with his second top ten.

At the halfway point of the 15 lap race, Barrichello’s lead over Miller had grown to 1.6 seconds. Brooks was 1.4 seconds behind Miller and had his mirrors full of Rasmussen and Porto.

With five laps remaining, Miller has slowly started to eat into Barrichello’s lead, crossing the ‘yard of bricks’ 1.3 seconds adrift of the leader with five laps to go.

The gap remained the same as they started the next lap, with the best battle on track between Brooks and Rasmussen for the podium’s final spot.

Brooks was able to hold the position, which allowed Porto a chance to enter the fight. The pole-sitter was able to get around the championship leader in Turn 1 to move to fourth place.

With two laps remaining, Barrichello held a 1.2-second advantage over Miller. Behind Miller, Brooks, Porto, Rasmussen, Gold, and d’Orlando were nose to tail with a spot on the podium the prize.

The gap between the front two was only one second as they got the white flag.

Further back, the battle for the podium’s final spot was a train of five cars following Brooks.

Barrichello was able to hold on, crossing the ‘yard of bricks a slim 0.5 seconds ahead of Miller. Further back, Brooks held on for third, with the four drivers behind him within less than two seconds.

Cooper Tires Indy Pro 2000 Indy Grand Prix race #2 race results (unofficial)

1 22 Eduardo Barrichello Pabst Racing 15 laps
2 40 Jack William Miller Miller Vinatieri Motorsports -0.5366
3 44 Christian Brooks Exclusive Autosport -3.7237
4 12 Kiko Porto DEForce Racing -4.1313
5 6 Christian Rasmussen Jay Howard Driver Development -4.5408
6 4 Michael d’Orlando Cape Motorsports -5.0767
7 3 Reece Gold Cape Motorsports -5.7951
8 9 Nolan Siegel Jay Howard Driver Development -7.5669
9 21 Yuven Sundaramoorthy Pabst Racing -10.8909
10 41 Max Kaeser Miller Vinatieri Motorsports -14.0728
11 2 Josh Green Cape Motorsports -14.5798
12 20 Simon Sikes Legacy Autosport -15.6621
13 10 Cameron Shields DEForce Racing -18.3129
14 23 Matt Round-Garrido Pabst Racing -19.7855
15 7 Christian Bogle Jay Howard Driver Development -23.0505
16 1 Prescott Campbell Exclusive Autosport -23.4003
17 5 Wyatt Brichacek Jay Howard Driver Development -23.5578
18 16 Josh Pierson Exclusive Autosport -23.7734
19 18 Bijoy Garg Jay Howard Driver Development -30.4487
20 24 Michael Myers Legacy Autosport -42.9045
21 8 Kyle Dupell Cape Motorsports -5 LAPS

The remainder of the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship schedule

Friday, September 4, 2020
2:45pm – 3:30pm – USF2000 Race #3 (20 laps or 50 minutes)

DEForce Racing rookie Kiko Porto leads fog interrupted USF2000 practice – top 11 within a half-second

Kiko Porto on track at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The DEForce Racing rookie led the first practice session in preparation for a triple-header on the IMS Road Course. (Photo Courtesy Of Andersen Promotions)

By Steve Wittich

For the first time in his short Road To Indy Presented by Cooper Tires career, DEForce Racing rookie Kiko Porto led a practice session. The just-turned 17-year-old turned in a lap at 85.919 seconds.

Jack William Miller (Miller Vinatieri Motorsport), coming off his first podium at Lucas Oil Raceway, continued to build on his momentum, turning the only other sub-86 second lap on his 20th and final lap of the practice.

The rest of the top seven was made up of Cape Motorsports and Pabst Racing drivers, with the order being Reece Gold (Cape Motorsports), Eduardo Barrichello (Pabst Racing), Yuven Sundaramoorthy (Pabst Racing), Michael d’Orlando (Cape Motorsports), and Josh Green (Cape Motorsports).

Current championship leader, Jay Howard Driver Development sophomore Christian Rasmussen could only manage the eighth quickest time.

The top 11 drivers were within 0.5 seconds of Porto, and 19 of the 21 entries were within one second of the top spot.

If they weren’t already awake at 8 am, the denizens of Speedway, Ind. were treated to a buzzing alarm of 21 Elite Engine prepared 2.0L power plants, signifying the start of USF2000 practice.

Not surprisingly, Rasmussen went to the top of the timing screens on the green track, with Pabst Racing’s Matt Round-Garrido and Barrichello, right there with the Dane.

The quickest lap at the 10-minute mark of the lone 30-minute practice session was held by Gold, with a circuit timed at 86.604 seconds. The rest of the top 10 were Round-Garrido, Rasmussen, Porto, Barrichello, Miller, Rasmussen, Nolan Siegel (Jay Howard Driver Development), Sundaramoorthy, Wyatt Brichacek (Jay Howard Driver Development), and Kyle Dupell (Cape Motorsports)

At just past the ten-minute portion of the session, the red flag came out for track conditions as the fog rolled in across the north end of the 2.439-mile, 14-turn road course.

The sun tries to break through the fog covered portions of the 2.439-mile, 14-turn Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course (crappy photo courtesy of Steve Wittich – TSO)

The Indianapolis, Ind. metro area was under a dense fog advisory, so the fog was not wholly unexpected. It feels like we’re on the Monterey Peninsula. The sun was shining brightly, so the delay wasn’t too long.

Just before the red flag came out, Brazilian Porto went to the top of the timing charts with a lap 86.422 seconds.

The session was extended to run the full 30-minutes, and all other sessions are being pushed back by the appropriate amount of time.

When the green flag came back out at 8:45 am, 18-minutes were remaining on the clock.

With 15-minutes remaining in practice, Round-Garrido was the quickest driver with a lap of 86.323 seconds; he was followed by Porto, Miller, Gold, Barrichello, Rasmussen, Siegel, Shields, Sundaramoorthy, and Brichacek.

With ten minutes remaining in the session, Porto turned the first lap under 86 seconds.

d’Orlando, Sundaramoorthy, Barrichello, Gold, and Miller all took shots to supplant the DEForce Racing rookie at the top of the timing screens, but the lap was good enough to win practice.

The 21 drivers and cars turned a total of 393 laps, with nine drivers turning 20 laps and tying for the most laps completed.

Next up for the lowest rung of the Road To Indy Presented by Cooper Tires is qualifying scheduled for 11 am. However, we are about 30 minutes behind schedule, so expect that to be closer to 11:30 am.

Cooper Tires USF2000 Indy Grand Prix practice results

1 12 Kiko Porto DEForce Racing 1:25.919 –.—- 18
2 40 Jack William Miller Miller Vinatieri Motorsports 1:25.996 0.0770 20
3 3 Reece Gold Cape Motorsports 1:26.141 0.2223 18
4 22 Eduardo Barrichello Pabst Racing 1:26.178 0.2588 20
5 21 Yuven Sundaramoorthy Pabst Racing 1:26.181 0.2619 18
6 4 Michael d’Orlando Cape Motorsports 1:26.223 0.3037 19
7 2 Josh Green Cape Motorsports 1:26.242 0.3233 19
8 6 Christian Rasmussen Jay Howard Driver Development 1:26.308 0.3887 12
9 23 Matt Round-Garrido Pabst Racing 1:26.323 0.4045 17
10 9 Nolan Siegel Jay Howard Driver Development 1:26.347 0.4283 20
11 10 Cameron Shields DEForce Racing 1:26.416 0.4973 18
12 5 Wyatt Brichacek Jay Howard Driver Development 1:26.431 0.5123 20
13 44 Christian Brooks Exclusive Autosport 1:26.446 0.5275 18
14 8 Kyle Dupell Cape Motorsports 1:26.570 0.6511 19
15 16 Josh Pierson Exclusive Autosport 1:26.664 0.7453 19
16 41 Max Kaeser Miller Vinatieri Motorsports 1:26.784 0.8650 20
17 18 Bijoy Garg Jay Howard Driver Development 1:26.889 0.9704 20
18 1 Prescott Campbell Exclusive Autosport 1:26.975 1.0561 18
19 20 Simon Sikes Legacy Autosport 1:27.002 1.0828 20
20 7 Christian Bogle Jay Howard Driver Development 1:27.046 1.1273 20
21 24 Michael Myers Legacy Autosport 1:27.316 1.3976 20


*****FYI – things are currently running about 30 minutes behind schedule.*****

The remainder of the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship schedule (all times EDT)

Thursday, September 3, 2020
11am – 11:30am – USF2000 Qualifying #1
2pm – 2:45pm – USF2000 Race #1 (15 laps)

Friday, September 4, 2020
8am – 8:30am – USF2000 Qualifying #2
11am – 11:45am – USF2000 Race #2 (15 laps)
2:45pm – 3:30pm – USF2000 Race #3 (20 laps or 50 minutes)


Don’t miss any of the Road To Indy Presented by Cooper Tires action:

Robert Megennis returns to 2020 Andretti Autosport Indy Lights team

Robert Megennis returns to 2020 Andretti Autosport Indy Lights team

The 19-year-old enters sophomore Indy Lights season with support from partners SailPoint, Sirius Computer Solutions, Juniper Networks and CyberArk

INDIANAPOLIS  (Feb. 17, 2020) — Andretti Autosport announced today that Robert Megennis will return to pilot the No. 27 entry for the championship-winning team for the 2020 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season. As a rookie, the 19-year-old scored his first Indy Lights-career win with the team on the road course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway after starting from the pole position.

The New York-native followed the success in early May by capturing the pole for the series crown jewel, the Freedom 100. Megennis went on to stand on the podium six times and recorded 12 top-five finishes throughout his rookie campaign.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Robert back to the team,” said J-F Thormann, President of Andretti Autosport. “From the moment he climbed in the car, Robert has been determined to fight for results and it has paid off, earning a victory and a handful of podiums last season. He was a strong contender in the Freedom 100 and we’re happy he’ll have another chance to claim that title. We’re really looking forward to watching Robert mature even more in the car and anxious to see what results he can capture in 2020.”

Throughout his career in the Road to Indy ladder system, the veteran driver has scored 15 podiums and collected 52 top-10 finishes. Heading into his fifth year of Road to Indy competition, Megennis has never finished outside of the top six in each championship run he has competed in. Starting his career in 2016, he earned Rookie of the Year honors along with the Hard-Charger award in Cooper Tires USF2000, where he finished the season as the top American driver in sixth. He went on to compete as a sophomore in Cooper Tires USF2000 in 2017 and ran the Indy Pro 2000 Championship in 2018.

“I’m super excited to join Andretti Autosport for another year in Indy Lights. We had a great 2019 season and 2020 will be even better,” said Megennis. “I’m confident that we’re only going to grow and get stronger together as a team. Thanks to everyone at Andretti Autosport, SailPoint, Sirius Computer Solutions, Juniper Networks, CyberArk and my family for giving me this opportunity. Let’s go win some races.”

The No. 27 machine will receive support from a wide portfolio of partners including SailPoint, Sirius Computer Solutions, Juniper Networks and CyberArk.

“Robert’s work ethic and commitment to the sport is nothing short of impressive. We are eager to put our name behind a racer who we believe is the future champion of Indy Lights,”said Juliette Rizkallah, Chief Marketing Officer for SailPoint. “Robert and his team have been an invaluable partner to us and we look forward to extending our partnership in the year ahead.”   

“Sirius is proud to team up with Andretti Autosport and RKM Racing in 2020. This partnership is a great opportunity for us to showcase our focus on technology, innovation and agility,” said Michael Harwood, SVP of Marketing at Sirius.

Veteran Megennis will join rookie teammates Kyle Kirkwood (No. 28 Dallara) and Danial Frost (No. 68 Dallara) as the Indy Lights season kicks off on the streets of downtown St. Petersburg, Florida, for the first doubleheader of the 2020 season March 14-15.


By Steve Wittich

INDIANAPOLIS (Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020) –  Andretti Autosport has expanded its roster with the addition of Danial Nielsen Frost for the 2020 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season. The 18-year-old from Singapore is slated to slide into the No. 68 machine for the championship team.

“It is with great pleasure that we welcome Danial to our Indy Lights program,” said J-F Thormann, president, Andretti Autosport. “Danial has shown impressive speed and talent across his racing career and we are excited to see what 2020 has in store for him and our Indy Lights team.”

In 2018, Frost made his first start in USF2000 at Road America and finished his first season with five top-10 finishes. Now entering his third year in the Road to Indy ladder system, Frost competed in the 2019 Indy Pro 2000 Championship where he finished fifth in the point standings and captured two wins and six podiums. Starting from pole position, Frost earned his first Indy Pro 2000 victory for the Freedom 90 on Carb Night, the Friday before the Indianapolis 500.

“To be a member of Andretti Autosport is truly an honor. I’m very excited to be driving for a renowned team and I’m looking forward to the 2020 season,” said Frost. “I am very thankful for this opportunity and especially to my sponsor Denjet. Also, I would like to thank my family, friends and fans that are supporting me.”

Frost began his racing career in 2015 with go karts and won the Singapore Karting Championship a year later. Since 2016, Frost has competed in four different Formula 4 Championships and finished third in the Formula Masters Asian Series in 2017.

Frost joins Kyle Kirkwood as the second driver announced to Andretti’s 2020 effort. The duo will strap into their Andretti Autosport machines as the 2020 Indy Lights season kicks off on the streets St. Petersburg, Florida, for the first doubleheader.

Honda Performance Development (HPD) Establishes F3 Americas Drivers’ Champion Scholarship

Honda Performance Development (HPD) Establishes F3 Americas Drivers’ Champion Scholarship 

  • Honda demonstrates commitment to North American open wheel driver development 
  • Scholarship enables F3 America’s Driver’s Champion to race Indy Lights full season
  • F3 America’s champion driver gains unique access to Honda’s winning INDYCAR teams 

Santa Clarita, CA (February 3, 2020) – The  F3 Americas Championship provides talented young racers the opportunity to develop their skills in a state-of-the-art open-wheel chassis powered by the latest version of the iconic Honda Civic® Type-R® power plant. Following in the footsteps of the largest and most successful F4 series in the world, F3 Americas has grown in just two seasons to an average of 12 entries per race at venues such as Circuit Trois-Rivierès, Barber Motorsports Park and the Circuit of the Americas.

Supporting the next generation of racing talent is a fundamental value of Honda Performance Development (HPD), and as a committed partner to the U.S. F4 Championship, the F3 Americas Championship and the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, HPD is proud to expand its support for the F3 Drivers’ Champion.

HPD’s scholarship will enable the F3 Drivers’ Champion to compete in the subsequent year’s Indy Lights full season. This annual HPD scholarship will be used to support the F3 Champion’s chosen Indy Lights team in the following year’s season and will be transferable to any HPD partner team supporting the F3 Drivers’ Champion in the Indy Lights or NTT INDYCAR SERIES.

“The F3 Americas Championship has produced drivers that are ready for the next step of open wheel competition,” said John Whiteman, Manager, HPD Commercial Motorsports. “We are pleased to be able to offer access to Honda’s winning teams and provide a critical contribution toward young driver’s professional racing aspirations.”

The regional F3 championship is sanctioned by SCCA Pro Racing, and features the F3-FIA* spec JS F3 chassis designed and sold by Ligier Automotive in North Carolina, which meets the most advanced global FIA safety specifications, including the first North American application of a race car Halo. The car, running on proven Hankook tires, is powered by a 303-horsepower Honda Performance Development version of the Honda Civic Type-R turbocharged K20C1 motor. This reliable and powerful engine is manufactured in the United States at Honda’s Anna Engine Plant in Ohio, and the engines are shipped to HPD in Santa Clarita, California for racing modifications including installation of a dry sump and other race-specific components. 

The F3 Americas Championship aligns with the global FIA development ladder philosophy of using common components to provide a cost-efficient, reliable, and powerful racing structure as drivers ascend through the levels on their way to U.S. or global racing success.

“Since the beginning, the F4 U.S. Championship and F3 Americas Championship have focused on giving young drivers the tools and track time they need to nurture and demonstrate their abilities,” said Dan Helman, President of SCCA Pro Racing. “Along with the great racing venues, instructional curricula, and veteran racing experience shared with drivers, there’s no question that this increased award will attract talented racers to this modern, competitive racing series.”

The seven-event 2020 F3 Americas Championship Powered by Honda begins April 9 through April 11 at Road Atlanta. Interested drivers can connect with committed racing teams at Full details on the HPD Drivers’ Champion award will be available prior to the first event.

*Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile

Road To Indy at Mid-Ohio – Rasmussen makes first lap pass for the lead in second straight USF2000 victory

By Steve Wittich

For the second straight race, Christian Rasmussen made a first lap pass for the lead after starting on the outside of the front row.

Christian Rasmussen celebrates a USF2000 win on the podium at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (Photo Courtesy Of Andersen Promotions)

The Jay Howard Driver Development driver survived a Lap 3 restart, steadily and consistently driving away from an intense battle for second. The 20-year-old crossed the finish line with a healthy 9.5753 second gap over the pole sitter Hunter McElrea.

McElrea, spent 13 laps battling Matthew Round-Garrido for second, finally passing the BN Racing driver with four laps to go. After the race, McElrea was less than pleased with some of the Englishman’s defensive driving maneuvers.

Combine the three extra points earned by that pass with an eighth place finish by championship leader Braden Eves and the Kiwi starts Sunday’s race 13 points closer to the points lead. The margin between first and second is now 28 points.

McElrea’s Pabst Racing teammate Colin Kaminsky was able to get around Round-Garrido at the same time, finishing on the podium for the third time this year.

The call to start the 17 2.0L Elite Engines powering the 17 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship entries came as scheduled at 4:01 pm. The ambient temperature was 84F, the track temperature was 115F and the humidity was a comfortable 45%.

The front row of McElrea and Rasmussen brought the field to the green flag on the front straight. McElrea got a decent jump, with Rasmussen ducking in behind the Soul Red No. 22. The Dane was able to grab the lead in Turn 4 on the first lap.

The start of the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (Photo Courtesy Of Andersen Promotions)

At the back of the field, the No. 77 of Timmy Pagliuso, went way too deep into Turn 4, spinning and getting stuck in ‘China Beach.’ The yellow flag came out before the first lap was completed.

The running order at the end of first lap was Rasmussen, McElrea, Round-Garrido, Tomaselli, Kaminsky, Yuven Sundaramoorthy, Jak Crawford, Braden Eves, Manuel Sulaiman, Darren Keane, Eduardo Barrichello, Zach Holden, Jack William Miller, Reece Gold, Christian Bogle, Nolan Siegel and Pagliuso.

The green flag came back out to begin Lap 4. Rasmussen jumped out to a big lead. Behind him, Round-Garrido was able to get past McElrea for second with an outside Turn 4 pass.

On Lap 6, Kaminsky made a move on Tomaselli for fourth, immediately putting pressure on his teammate McElrea.

Rasmussen crossed the line 1.8 seconds ahead his former Jay Howard Driver Development teammate Round-Garrido. The Pabst Racing foursome of McElrea, Kaminsky, Tomaselli, and Sundaramoorthy were running nose to tail in third through sixth.

By Lap 8, McElrea was all over the gearbox of Round-Garrido, looking to the outside of the BN Racing driver in Turn 4, but thinking better of it and tucking back in behind him.

The Mazda Road To Indy 200K Scholarship winner faked to the outside again on the next lap, but once again, dropped in behind Round-Garrido.

Out front Rasmussen had built a 3.99 second lead.

Only three seconds covered second place Round-Garrido, to eighth place Eves.

On Lap 11, McElrea looked to inside of Round-Garrido, but once again, was unable to complete the pass.

Rasmussen had a 5.3 second lead with five to go. Behind him, ten cars were running line-astern, proving that the passing at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course isn’t easy.

The JHDD/CSU|One Cure/Lucas Oil sponsored No. 6 in the hands of Rasmussen was turning incredibly consistent laps out front.

With four laps remaining, Round-Garrido made a mistake, falling off the podium to fourth after being passed by McElrea and Kaminsky.

Further back in the field an inter team battle between a trio of Cape Motorsports teammate was underway. Newcomer Crawford was defending against Eves and Keane.

The 14-year-old was able to hold off his older teammate to bring the RE/Max, Am Cap Home Loans home sponsored No. 4 in seventh place.

Cooper Tires USF2000 Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio Race #1 Unofficial Results

1 6 Christian Rasmussen Jay Howard Driver Development 20 LAPS
2 22 Hunter McElrea Pabst Racing 9.5753
3 23 Colin Kaminsky Pabst Racing 10.7498
4 27 Matt Round-Garrido BN Racing 11.2931
5 24 Bruna Tomaselli Pabst Racing 12.7114
6 21 Yuven Sundaramoorthy Pabst Racing 13.2952
7 4 Jak Crawford Cape Motorsports 13.8461
8 8 Braden Eves Cape Motorsports 14.0798
9 2 Darren Keane Cape Motorsports 14.5044
10 14 Zach Holden Legacy Autosport 15.1382
11 12 Manuel Sulaiman DEForce Racing 15.6301
12 3 Reece Gold Cape Motorsports 27.0755
13 40 Jack William Miller Miller Vinatieri Motorsports 27.4602
14 41 Eduardo Barrichello Miller Vinatieri Motorsports 28.6715
15 7 Christian Bogle Jay Howard Driver Development 29.2901
16 36 Nolan Siegel Newman Wachs Racing 32.1383
17 77 Timmy Pagliuso Legacy Autosport 18 LAPS

Sunday’s final 20-lap or 40-minute Cooper Tires USF2000 Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio race is scheduled to get underway at 11:05 am.

Road To Indy at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course – Previewing Indy Pro 2000 – Lindh’s consistency leads to championship lead

By Steve Wittich

If you aren’t paying attention to the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires championship yet, this weekend at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course would be a great time to start.

There is currently a quartet of multiple race-winning drivers that are separated by a slim 35 points.

Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires standings with seven races remaining

1 Rasmus Lindh – R 237
2 Parker Thompson 207 -30
3 Kyle Kirkwood – R 205 -32
4 Danial Frost – R 202 -35
5 Sting Ray Robb 173 -64
6 Nikita Lastochkin 137 -100
7 Phillippe Denes – R 118 -119
8 Kory Enders – R 116 -121
9 Moisés de la Vara 114 -123
10 Jacob Abel – R 106 -131
11 Antonio Serravalle – R 105 -132
12 Ian Rodriguez- R 93 -144
13 Charles Finelli 76 -161
14 Jacob Loomis – R 48 -189
15 Damiano Fioravanti – R 22 -215
16 Parker Locke – R 20 -217

Current points leader Lindh has been the most consistent of the foursome, building a 30 point lead over Parker Thompson. The Juncos Racing rookie does not outright lead the series in victories, poles, or laps led. However, the Swedish driver does lead all drivers with seven podiums and has not finished worse than fourth all season. So far, a master class in being consistent.

Current Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires points leader Rasmus Lindh (Photo Courtesy Of Andersen Promotions)

“Of course winning is always the objective, but this is a long season that often rewards consistency,” said championship contender Parker Thompson. “After winning the first two races in St. Petersburg, I’ve been reminded often how important that consistency is. With Abel Motorsports, we’ve made a lot of headway this year. One single performance isn’t going to earn us the title. If our group can continue in the direction that we’ve been headed over the last couple of weekends though, then I’m very excited about our chances.”

Lindh made three USF2000 starts at the central Ohio circuit last year, grabbing one podium. He was the second quickest driver at the recent Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course open test.

A scant five points separate Thompson, Kyle Kirkwood, and Danial Frost with three events remaining on the calendar.

Thompson has one win, four podiums and eight top-fives in ten Road To Indy races on the 2.258-mile, 13-Turn Mid-Ohio Road Course. The Canadian has finished on the podium the last four times the series has been on track but is looking for his first win since a pair of trips to victory lane in the season-opening race weekend.

Kirkwood has climbed to the top step of the podium in his three previous Road To Indy starts at ‘Mid-O.” The 20-year-old also has three F3 Americas Championship Powered By Honda and two F4 United States Championship Powered By Honda on the historic road course.

Kirkwood is the hottest driver over the past five races, winning three times and scoring 137 points going back to the race in May at the 0.686-mile Lucas Oil Raceway Oval.

Indy Pro 2000 points scored over the past five races.

1 Kyle Kirkwood – R 137
2 Rasmus Lindh – R 128
3 Danial Frost – R 117
4 Parker Thompson 109
5 Sting Ray Robb 90
6 Ian Rodriguez- R 77
7 Nikita Lastochkin 73
8 Kory Enders – R 73
9 Phillippe Denes – R 70
10 Moisés de la Vara 61
11 Antonio Serravalle – R 59
12 Jacob Abel – R 55
13 Charles Finelli 45
14 Jacob Loomis – R 28

Other storylines to follow this weekend

Jacob Abel, who is foregoing an F3 Americas Championship Powered By Honda weekend at Virginia International Raceway, has made five USF2000 series starts at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. He had a trio of solid 11th place finishes last year. The 18-year-old finished the recent open test with the sixth quickest time, only three-tenths off his more experienced Abel Motorsports teammate Parker Thompson.

The Louisville, Kentucky driver is due for a breakout weekend, and with his past Road To Indy experience at the 2.258-mile, 13-Turn Mid-Ohio Road Course, this could be the weekend.

Will testing results carry over?

Exclusive Autosport rookie Danial Frost led the combined timesheet during a two-day series open test at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course a few weeks ago. Frost led the way with a lap of 76.2167. His championship rivals were all within a three-tenths of the 17-year-old. Rasmus Lindh (twice), Parker Thompson (twice) and Kyle Kirkwood joined Frost as drivers that led one of the six sessions on the 2.258-mile, 13-Turn Mid-Ohio Road Course.


A new team, Turn 3 Motorsport along with driver Antoine Comeau will both be making their series debut this weekend at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Comeau and Turn 3 Motorsports will be contesting the remainder of the Indy Pro 2000 rounds this year, in preparation for a full-season campaign in 2020.

Comeau, a Canadian with an impressive resume developed racing Radicals, has completed an extensive testing program in the team’s No. 3 PM-18 to prepare for this new adventure.

Experienced Road To Indy racer and engineer Peter Dempsey leads Turn 3 Motorsport’s effort into Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires.

The Irishman won ten times in two seasons of Indy Pro 2000 action, before spending parts of three seasons in Indy Lights. Dempsey, who lives in the Chicago, Ill. area has also spent time as a race engineer with Juncos Racing and DEForce Racing.

“It’s great to be back to being a part of the Road to Indy ladder,” said Team Owner Peter Dempsey. “Antoine (Comeau) has been working really hard over the past year to adapt to the Indy Pro 2000 car. We had a very successful test here at Mid-Ohio a few weeks ago, and I’m really looking forward to using that as a platform to keep improving throughout the weekend.”

“Antoine has done a fantastic job in the Radical Cup this year,” continued Dempsey. “Joining the Indy Pro 2000 series presents a new challenge for him. We are looking to build on this weekend and finish out the rest of the 2019 season to compete in a full season campaign in 2020.”

Some Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course history

The middle rung of the Road To Indy, the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires Series will contest a Saturday/Sunday doubleheader on the 2.258-mile, 13-Turn Mid-Ohio Road Course. It will mark the 18th and 19th races at “Mid-O” for the series.

Indy Pro 2000 winners at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course

2018 Race #2 Rinus VeeKay Juncos Racing
2018 Race #1 Rinus VeeKay Juncos Racing
2017 Race #3 Anthony Martin Cape Motorsports
2017 Race #2 Victor Franzoni Juncos Racing
2017 Race #1 Anthony Martin Cape Motorsports
2016 Race #2 Nico Jamin Cape Motorsports
2016 Race #1 Nico Jamin Cape Motorsports
2015 Race #2 Neil Alberico Cape Motorsports
2015 Race #1 Santi Urrutia Team Pelfrey
2014 Race #2 Garett Grist Andretti Autosport
2014 Race #1 Nicolas Costa Team Pelfrey
2013 Race #2 Matthew Brabham Andretti Autosport
2013 Race #1 Matthew Brabham Andretti Autosport
2006 Ryan Justice Northwest Autosport
2005 Rafa Matos Ocean Tomo Racing
2004 Michael McDowell Star Race Cars
2002 Guy Cosmo Racers Edge Motorsports

Juncos Racing is the only team active team that has won at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Drivers representing the Speedway, Ind. team have three race wins, including two by Rinus van Kalmthout (VeeKay) last year.

The team also has four poles at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, leading all teams. The only other active team with a pole win is BN Racing.

The Ricardo Juncos led team also has more podiums at ‘Mid-O’ than any other team. Timothy Buret, Diego Ferreira, Victor Franzoni, Robert Megennis, Will Owen, and VeeKay have combined for 13 podiums.

The pole-sitter has won 13 of 17 races. The furthest back a winner has started was fourth (Santi Urrutia in 2015). The average starting position of the winner is 1.8.

The only time the pole-sitter has failed to finish a race was in Race #2 last year, when David Malukas suffered a mechanical feature. The average finishing position of the pole-sitter is 2.8.

The previous 17 races have occurred over ten seasons, and the eventual series champion has won at least one race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in six of those years.

Race weekend basics

Race name: Cooper Tires Indy Pro 2000 Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio

Race #1 length: 25 laps or 40 minutes
Race #2 length: 25 laps or 50 minutes

Qualifying Record:70.9428 seconds by Santi Urrutia in 2016
Race Record: 71.5804 seconds by Jack Harvey in 2015

Each entry can utilize three new sets of Cooper Tire slicks as well as one set of used/scuffed tires from the race weekend in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Drivers failing to slow at least 15% in a timing sector with a local yellow will be subject to a two-place grid spot penalty.

Drivers who fail to heed the checkered flag at the end of a session will receive a two-grid spot penalty.

To avoid a red flag and penalty (see below) during qualifying, you must park your disabled vehicle in a safe area (determined by the race director)

Causing one red flag during a session will result in a driver losing their fastest lap.

Causing a second red flag during the same session will wipe out all of drivers laps, and they will be parked for the remainder of the session

Driver points are distributed as follows: 30 – 25 – 22 – 19 – 17 – 15 -14 – 13 – 12 – 11 – 10 – 9 – 8 – 7 – 6 – 5 – 4 – 3 – 2 – 1 – an additional one point will be awarded to the pole sitter, to the driver who leads the most laps, and to the driver who turns the quickest race lap.

Watch last year’s races.

Race #1

Race #2


Don’t miss any of the Road To Indy Presented by Cooper Tires action

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USF2000 at Road America – 2019 – Kaminsky grabs second straight pole – top three within three-hundredths

For the second straight Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship race, Pabst Racing veteran Colin Kaminsky will start on pole, but, it wasn’t by very much. A pair of drivers, Baron and McElrea, were both within three-hundredths of the Homer Glen, Ill. native.

The 18 USF2000 drivers entered for the Cooper Tires Grand Prix of Road America Powered by Elite Engines were the first of three straight Road To Indy Presented by Cooper Tires qualifying sessions on Friday afternoon.

The Cape Motorsports trio of Braden Eves, Reece Gold, and Darren Keane, along with Pabst Racing’s Hunter McElrea and Colin Kaminsky were the last five drivers to take to the iconic circuit.

Veteran Alexandre Baron was the early leader and was the only driver in the 130-second range.

McElrea, on his second lap of the session, went to provisional pole.

At the half-way point of the 20-minute session, the quickest driver with a lap at 130.2975 seconds was rookie McElrea. Kaminsky, Christian Rasmussen (Jay Howard Driver Development), Baron, Matthew Round-Garrido (BN Racing), Cameron Shields (Newman Wachs Racing), Jak Crawford (DEForce Racing), Braden Eves Cape Motorsports), Eduardo Barrichello (Miller Vinatieri Motorsports) and Darren Keane (Cape Motorsports).

McElrea went quicker on his third lap, but his lap was bested by teammate Kaminsky, as well as Baron.

Baron was able to quicker on his fourth lap but missed grabbing the provisional pole by two-hundredths of a second. Kaminsky was another hundredth back.

With five minutes remaining, championship leader Eves came to pit road, having turned only the 10th quickest lap at that point in the session. The Cape Motorsports crew made a quick adjustment, and the No. 8 was able to complete one lap at speed, moving from 11th to eighth.

The only other driver to go quicker on their final lap was Shields, who moved up to sixth.

Unlike the shorter road courses that we visit, drivers and team did not have the time to come to pit road for adjustments and then get their Cooper Tires up to peak operating temperature.

Cooper Tires Grand Prix of Road America Powered by Elite Engines USF2000 Unofficial Race #1 Qualifying Results.

1 23 Colin Kaminsky Pabst Racing 2:10.268 –.—- 8
2 14 Alex Baron Legacy Autosport 2:10.292 0.0247 7
3 22 Hunter McElrea Pabst Racing 2:10.298 0.0300 8
4 2 Darren Keane Cape Motorsports 2:10.686 0.4185 8
5 12 Manuel Sulaiman DEForce Racing 2:10.774 0.5063 8
6 73 Cameron Shields Newman Wachs Racing 2:10.854 0.5863 8
7 6 Christian Rasmussen Jay Howard Driver Development 2:10.860 0.5926 7
8 8 Braden Eves Cape Motorsports 2:10.882 0.6142 7
9 41 Eduardo Barrichello Miller Vinatieri Motorsports 2:11.007 0.7391 8
10 21 Yuven Sundaramoorthy Pabst Racing 2:11.029 0.7611 6
11 24 Bruna Tomaselli Pabst Racing 2:11.111 0.8436 8
12 52 Jak Crawford DEForce Racing 2:11.198 0.9306 8
13 27 Matt Round-Garrido BN Racing 2:11.245 0.9777 8
14 36 Nolan Siegel Newman Wachs Racing 2:11.613 1.3453 8
15 3 Reece Gold Cape Motorsports 2:11.739 1.4712 8
16 40 Jack William Miller Miller Vinatieri Motorsports 2:12.223 1.9552 8
17 28 Anthony Famularo BN Racing 2:13.578 3.3101 8
18 7 Christian Bogle Jay Howard Driver Development 2:13.968 3.7001 8

Saturday’s USF2000 race gets the green flag at noon on Saturday, but first up they will qualifying tomorrow morning again at 8 am.

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