c/o Andersen RacePark
10101 U.S. Highway 41 North
Palmetto, FL 34221
Phone (941) 723-3900
Fax (941) 723-3992
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October 4-6, 2013
Marlin CNG Services Grand Prix of Houston
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March 26, 2013
One week after starting the chase for USF2000 Championship top honors at the historic Sebring road course, the JDC drivers and crew were back on track facing the challenges of street racing. Given JDC Motorsports' record of success on street circuits, confidence was high entering Rounds three and Four in conjunction with the IZOD IndyCar Series season-opener.
With only one racer - Johnson - having raced an USF2000 entry previously around the 1.8-mile concrete-lined track, the goal during the two practice sessions was to steadily build speed as the racers became familiarized with the circuit and worked on car setups. The foursome did just that, with Rzadzinski indicating his intentions to be among the front-runners right away by going fourth fastest in P1, and second quickest in P2. Johnson likewise was a driver to watch in his No. 54 Universal Coating/SpeediCath/FlatOutNation.com/Red Line Oil/Bell Racing/Alpinestars/JDC MotorSports entry, turning the ninth best lap in the second session.
Despite the less than desired results in qualifying, spirits remained high under the JDC awning prior to Round Three, with the drivers and crew confident of success come race time. When the green flag waved late in the day, that confidence initially looked well placed, with all four drivers showcasing their racecraft skills.
Rzadzinski led the JDC contingent battling for positions among the top-three, while Johnson, Toppe, and Oliveira engaged in multi-car fights. The march forward, unfortunately, ended for two of the racers just prior to the halfway mark. For Toppe, a rare mechanical issue resulted in a premature end to his run. Oliveira though was even less fortunate, as he was caught out by another racer, not only preventing him from continuing, but significant damage to his No. 12 Hula Veiculos/Future Stars Development/JZ Concepts/Racelite Protection/ Red Line Oil/JDC MotorSports racing steed meant an end to his event.
While disappointed with the sudden turn of events, the JDC crew remained upbeat, as both Rzadzinski and Johnson were enjoying great runs behind the wheels. Rzadzinski in the end captured his and the team's first podium finish of 2013, taking the checkered flag in well deserved third place. Johnson meanwhile further showcased his talents by advancing 13 positions, earning a hard fought 14th place finish.
When the drivers returned to the cockpits one day later, the goal was simple for the three JDC drivers still competing... avoid trouble and make the most of every opportunity. Rzadzinski, Toppe, and Johnson took that message to heart, mixing patience and aggression to steadily move forward during the 21-lap encounter. Right until the closing stages, it appeared all three drivers were poised to end the race having advanced multiple positions.
Rzadzinski in fact appeared set to add another podium finish, until contact and subsequent front wing damage resulted in an unrepresentative 11th place result. The No. 19 Toppe Motorsports/Red Line Oil/JDC MotorSports entry followed not far behind at the checkered flag, with Toppe having advanced an impressive seven places on the tight street circuit en route to 16th place. Johnson completed the JDC push forward in race two, fighting his way from 26th to 21st.
"First of all the CanTorque/Christenson Developments/JDC Motorsports car was incredible all weekend," stated Rzadzinski. "We were fast out of the box. I started the races with a car that I felt had the capabilities of fighting for a win. In the end, it was nice to get the monkey off my back with a podium in Race One. I was going for another podium in Race Two, but unfortunately made contact with another driver with a few laps left, which forced me to limp home without a front wing. Not the weekend we were looking for in the points, but I’m confident our pace is there going forward."
"I'm disappointed with how the weekend turned out," commented Oliveira. "I was steadily building speed and enjoying a good run in Race One before the incident. I had already overtaken at least five drivers. I can understand these things can happen in a race, but it was a meaningless move by the other driver. It took me out of the race and kept me from racing on Sunday. There is no other way to describe how I feel other than disappointed."
"St. Petersburg is an amazing circuit," said Toppe. "Although we faced some electrical issues in qualifying and Race One, I was able to gain positions in the second race of the weekend thanks to the stellar car JDC MotorSports gave to me. Thanks also go to Phil Lombardi of JJRD for the great coaching support. I'm looking for the season to only improve from here on out."
JDC MotorSports races with associate sponsorship from www.RedLineOil.com.
Additional information on JDC MotorSports can be obtained from the team’s website @ www.jdcmotorsports.com For direct contact, please contact John Church @ 952-233-3075
Learn more about Michael Johnson at michaeljohnsonracing.com and keep up to date via Twitter @ Racer54isCool and Facebook @ Michael-Johnson-Racing.
Learn more about Stefan Rzadzinski at www.rzadracing.com and keep up to date via Twitter @ rzadracing and Facebook @ Stefan-Rzadzinski.
Learn more about Clark Toppe via Twitter @ ClarkToppe and Facebook @ Clark-Toppe-Motorsports.
Category: Team News
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