Second 2019 Oval Race Provides Measuring Stick For Abel Team
First-year Indy Pro 2000 team Abel Motorsports of Louisville, KY came to World Wide Technology Raceway outside St. Louis with high hopes this weekend, anticipating a pair of strong runs at the season’s second and final oval track event. Unfortunately, a decision to use sticker tires for qualifying kept the two Abel machines from finding speed for the weekend and led to disappointing results.
“I honestly felt collectively this was going to be our best race of the year,” noted Canadian ace Parker Thompson, driver of the #8 Abel Motorsports entry. “It showed that way in testing. Last year you would never scrub tires. These new Cooper tires, we were the only team that didn’t scrub tires, and we paid the price on that.”
Thompson qualified only 9th, and teammate Jacob Abel qualified 10th. During the pre-event test at WWTR, the Abel cars were in the top six the entire time. “At the end, we had a top-three car. We just didn’t have the chance to show it.” Thompson did take advantage of a couple of restarts to gain ground, finishing 6thon the day Saturday. With four races remaining in the 2019 season Thompson remains 3rdin the Championship, -64 to the leader.
Teammate Jacob Abel meantime suffered an early mechanical failure and was credited with a 12thplace finish.
“It’s unfortunate. We had a lot of confidence coming in. We had a lot of things happen that were out of our control. This was one of the tracks where we thought we could have some of our best results. It just didn’t work out that way.” Despite the setback, Abel remains 10th in the Championship standings with two race weekends remaining on the West Coast.
“We’re disappointed with the weekend obviously,” commented Team Principal Bill Abel. “We were expecting much better results after the series test here. All in all, a good learning experience. Parker was able to come back after our qualifying issues and earn a solid finish. With Jacob, mechanical issues happen sometimes in this sport. We’re not done yet for sure.”
The hard-working Abel team picked up their wrenches immediately after the checkered flag Saturday, working to prep their two Indy Pro 2000 machines for the upcoming doubleheader weekend at Portland International Raceway in Oregon this coming Saturday and Sunday. Results plus live timing and scoring are available at www.indypro2000.com, the official series website.