Race Report: Iowa Corn Indy 250
DES MOINES June 23, 2013—Takuma Sato and the ABC Supply team had the ingredients for another strong finish as the team was quite competitive at Iowa Speedway this weekend.
However, it was not to be.
Sato qualified seventh for the Iowa Corn Indy 250 – marking the ABC Supply team’s best ever start at that track. However, he lined up 17th because he incurred a 10-spot grid penalty due to an unauthorized engine change before qualifying. He was running 16th when the first caution came out for debris on the track. Pitting on lap 40, the ABC Supply crew serviced him in 7.4 seconds. The crew’s quick work gained him three spots on the track – he was 13th when the race restarted. He made some great moves to gain two more positions and was 11th by the time he came around again.
However, as the race progressed, they came upon some slower cars and Sato got boxed in. He lost about four or five positions when he had to lift. Pitting under green on lap 111, the first sign of trouble occurred when he left the pit and nearly stalled because of an engine issue. As he circled the track at speed, the Honda engineers asked him to try different engine maps and fuel maps as they worked feverishly to isolate the problem.