Juncos Racing Takes Two Podiums at Barber
 April 28, 2015| 
  • Team News
Birmingham, Ala. – Juncos Racing posted another strong week on track in the 2015 Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires with Rounds Four and Five of the Mazda Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park. Rookie Timothé Buret recorded his second podium finish taking second in Round Four while Canadian Garett Grist picked up his first podium of the season taking third in Round Five on the 2.3-mile, 17-turn road course located in Birmingham, Ala.

Juncos Racing began the third weekend of the Pro Mazda Championship season on a high note during the series two session test at Barber Motorsports Park. Timothé Buret finished second overall, followed by teammates José Gutiérrez in third, Will Owen in fifth and Garett Grist in seventh. The team continued their successful run in practice the following day, taking four of the top-five spots with Timothé Buret finishing second, José Gutiérrez third, Will Owen fourth and Garett Grist in fifth.

Round Four of the Pro Mazda Championship started off with a full-course caution immediately after going green due to multiple incidents on the first lap. Juncos Racing driver José Gutiérrez, who qualified sixth in the #7 Prisma car, was unfortunately involved in one of the first lap incidents and retired the race without completing a lap due to contact with the #28 of Dalton Kellett.  After the five lap caution Buret, who qualified second in the #6 BroadSign car, tried to close the gap for first by posting the fastest lap overall for the race with a time of 1:21.684. The Frenchman had to settle for second, recording his second podium finish in the Pro Mazda series. Teammates Garett Grist, driving the #5 BlackList/Lander Property Management car, took home seventh and Will Owen, driver of the #23 AMR car, finished ninth.

Garett Grist kept the podium finishes alive for Juncos Racing in Round Five of the championship, after starting seventh and making his way through the field to third, recording his best finish of the season. Rookie Will Owen, who started eighth, finished just off the podium to take fourth. Buret, who made his the second start from the front row, went into a tight battle for the lead when the green flag waved with the #22 of Weiron Tan. Both Buret and Tan went side by side for the start, however Buret was given no room and was forced off track, dropping him to the back of the field. Tan was penalized for the action against Buret and was sent to the back of the field. Buret was able to make multiple passes to finish eighth. Teammate Gutiérrez, who started sixth, had another frustrating day when he was forced off track on lap 13 by the #22 of Tan and ended his day due to too much damage.

Juncos Racing Team Owner Ricardo Juncos is pleased with the performance by all four drivers even in tough situations on track and looks forward to adding more podium finishes as the season continues next month at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

"All four of our drivers performed outstanding this past weekend in Barber,” said Juncos. “Tim (Buret) unfortunately had his second race ruined by a fellow competitor before the start, otherwise we expected that he could challenge for his first win of the season starting from second. We are looking forward to the Indy GP, given the pace the team has had there in the past we expect solid results.”

Driver Quotes:
Timothé Buret (Montpellier, France)
: “I’m really happy to be back on the podium with our second place in Race 1 at Barber. A second place finish is a very good thing for the championship. Race 2 was interesting, at the start of the race Weiron (Tan) pushed me off the track before we got to the final cone. I don’t understand what he was thinking, but all I could do was get back on track to make my way back through the field. I was able to make a few passes, but with not enough green flag laps we could only move up so far. I’m very motivated going into the next rounds at Indianapolis after how much momentum we have created in the last few races. My family will be joining me for the first time this season and I can’t wait to have them here to share the success.”

Garett Grist (Grimsby, Ontario, Canada):  “Barber ended up being a great weekend for us! We struggled a bit with the red flag in qualifying which hurt our starting position for the races. Since Barber is such an aero dependent track we knew we had our work cut out for us in the races. In the first race I ended up finishing seventh after going off in Turn One on the start and sliding through the grass up into Turn Two. I was much faster than the guy ahead of me, but just no way to pass. In Race Two I was able to pass four guys on the first lap including three guys on the outside in Turn Two. We had great pace, just need to work on qualifying so we don’t put ourselves in a hole. I can’t thank the guys enough for all of their hard work! I’m very excited for the month of May!”

José Gutiérrez (Monterrey, Mexico): “I think Barber was a great learning experience. We experienced some new types of race situations. Race Two was going great for me with an awesome start, but the car started to give me a lot of understeer in Turns Two and Eight and I lost a few positions, but told myself to just finish the race. I saw Weiron Tan coming behind me, so I was trying my best with the car to stay in front. We had a great battle going with Weiron (Tan), but then he decided to try to pass me on the fastest corner of the track and made contact with me and I was taken out of the race. Let's see what the Race Director thinks about it and let's forget this weekend and go to Indy 100 percent focused.”

Will Owen (Castle Rock, Colo.): “Just like Winterfest earlier this year, this weekend at Barber has been up and down, but this time it ended on a good note. I qualified eighth and finished ninth in Race One and then had my best finish of the weekend taking fourth. We had a little bit of bad luck, but showed a lot of pace in qualifying. Our luck finally turned around for Race Two when I was able to get around four cars at the start of the race and was able to make up another position during the race. It ended up fantastic and I’m really excited for Indy because this weekend has given me a lot of momentum and it’s given the team a lot of momentum.”

The 2015 Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires continues next month May 7-9 with Rounds Six, Seven and Eight on the road course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Round Six will be the rescheduled race from NOLA Motorsports Park (North), after the race was cancelled due to weather in April. For more information please visit juncosracing.com and promazdachampionship.com.

About Juncos Racing: Ricardo Juncos, a second generation and former Formula Renault driver, grew up with a deep passion and desire for racing. At the age of 14, Juncos made his first steps in the racing community driving karts in Argentina. Through his success in karts Juncos was able to join the Formula Renault class competing throughout South America. After funding became difficult as many drivers experience over their career, Juncos began working for many race teams in order to continue his own racing career. During this time Juncos was able to learn all aspects of the car in and out, along with schooling in mechanical and electrical engineering. Stationed in Buenos Aires, Argentina and headed by Ricardo Juncos, in 1997 “Juncos Racing” became a full-service Formula Racing team. By 2003, the team relocated to Miami, Florida as a full-service karting team.  During the first few years in the U.S., the team picked up 19 local, regional, and national karting titles. Juncos Racing moved operations north to Indiana, where they developed into a formula open-wheel racing team in 2008. The team went into full swing dedicating most of the time preparing drivers and crew members for the next level in racing. Following this transitional year, Juncos Racing participated in its first open-wheel series, in the 2009 Star Mazda Championship - INDYCAR’s Mazda Road to Indy ladder series. 2010 proved to be a big year for the team with driver Conor Daly capturing the driver championship and finishing second in the team Star Mazda Championship. By 2012, the team’s operations expanded to include cars in the Firestone Indy Lights series and even recorded the fastest lap of the Freedom 100 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. That same year Juncos Racing took second in the Star Mazda team championship and third driver in the championship with driver Conner De Phillippi while Diego Ferreria was awarded “Most Improved Driver of the Year.” Juncos Racing continued their run in the Pro Mazda Championship (former Star Mazda Championship) finishing second in the 2013 team championship. Most recently the team finished one of their most successful years winning the driver championship, with Spencer Pigot, and the team championship in both the Cooper Tires Winterfest Championship and 2014 Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires. The team operates of out Brownsburg, Ind. 
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