Reece Gold Earns Podium Finish at Barber Motorsports Park
 April 19, 2021| 
  • Team News

Leeds, Alabama (April 19th, 2021) – Juncos Racing claimed their first podium of the 2021 Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires with Reece Gold finishing third in Round 1 of the Indy Pro 2000 Grand Prix of Alabama Presented by Cooper Tires.

The 2021 Indy Pro 2000 season kicked off Thursday, April 15th with two test sessions, followed by one practice session on the 2.3 mile, 17-Turn road course located just outside Birmingham, Alabama. Juncos Racing’s three-car line-up of Manuel Sulaiman, Reece Gold (rookie), and Kyffin Simpson (rookie) came out strong during the two test sessions. The team, along with most of the field did not go back on track during the first and only practice session that afternoon.

Friday morning the Indy Pro 2000 field returned for the first qualifying session of the 2021 season. Manuel Sulaiman driving the No. 22 Telcel/Juncos Racing car qualified fourth, while teammates Reece Gold in the No. 55 The Ticket Clinic/Juncos Racing car qualified seventh and Kyffin Simpson driving the No. 21 Simpson Race Products/Juncos Racing car qualified eighth. The second qualifying session took place that afternoon. Gold improved his qualifying run to start on the second row in the third position. The team would not be able to improve their qualifying positions with Sulaiman and Simpson after a red flag ended the session early. Simpson qualified eighth and Sulaiman finished ninth.

The first race of the 2021 Indy Pro 2000 Championship took place Saturday. After a clean start for the 17-car field, Sulaiman was able to move up to third, where he would remain the rest of the 25-lap race and claim the first podium of the year for Juncos Racing. Gold, who started seventh worked he way up to finish just off the podium in fourth. Simpson, who was involved in an incident was forced to pit for repairs and would return to the race going one lap down to finish 11th. That afternoon Sulaiman was unfortunately disqualified after an infringement with Rule 14.31 found during post-race tech, which gave Gold the third-place finish.

Round 2 concluded the weekend Sunday morning at Barber Motorsports Park. Gold, who started third lost multiple positions during the warmup lap due to an electrical issue that caused the car to shut off forcing him to recycle the power to get the car powered on again, putting him at the back of the field to start the race. He went on to finish 13th. Simpson who was running mid-pack was involved in an incident damaging the nose and would pit for repairs. He returned to the track without losing a lap and went on to put in the second-fastest lap of the race. Simpson finished 17th. Sulaiman, who started ninth, picked up one position to finish inside the Top-10 in eighth.

Juncos Racing Team Owner Ricardo Juncos said, “After an off-season full of changes to our crew and our new driver line up I am very pleased with the strong pace we showed at Barber this past week. Everyone performed amazingly. The drivers have developed great chemistry with the team and I know we will be back stronger at St. Pete. This is a long championship, so we will continue to stay focused towards our goals. I want to thank everyone for their hard work and to all of the amazing support we have received from our fans.”

The Indy Pro 20000 Championship continues next week with Rounds 3 and 4 April 23-25th on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida.  

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