Star Mazda: Ireland’s Dempsey knocks Christodoulou off top spot
By LJ Hutchins
Saturday, July 11th, 2009
Ireland’s Peter Dempsey must be wondering if there’s something particularly aerodynamic about green hair after adopting the style in celebration of his Star Mazda pole in Iowa – and converting it into a race win.
The unconventionally-barnetted driver, set to test for his country’s A1GP team in September as boss Mark Gallagher wonders out loud about bringing in young new talent, took his second win of the season after switching from AIM Autosport to Juncos Racing just two weeks ago.
Having finished fourth in the previous event at Milwaukee, and arriving in Iowa in second place in the championship behind Britain’s Adam Christodoulou, he went on to leave with a nine-point lead despite having run second for most of the race.
Andersen Racing’s Conor Daly took a hard-fought second place after qualifying eighth with a performance that allowed him to climb from eighth to fourth in the championship.
Third, from fifth on the grid, was Canadian David Ostella with American Rusty Mitchell taking fourth place from sixth on the grid. Rounding out the top five was Christodoulou, who failed to capitalise on his third-place grid slot.
The only other British driver Richard Kent, who is Daly’s team-mate at Andersen Racing, exited the race on lap three.
Dempsey said: “I just can’t thank the Juncos team enough for giving me such a great car all weekend. I’ve been going along race-to-race trying to find the money to continue, never with enough to go testing before a race.
“And now, I got to test at this track before I came here to race, and next week we’re going to do a test at Autobahn, the next track where we race.
“This is the way racing should be and I’m lucky to have this opportunity and happy to score a win here for the Juncos Racing team.”
Dempsey now leads the Star Mazda Championship battle with 252 points on the board, followed by JDC Motorsports driver Adam Christodoulou on 243 – and with the distinction of being the only other driver to score two wins this season.