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Saturday, July 13, 2024

Malukas continues “emotional rollercoaster” after qualifying third at Mid-Ohio

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The comeback is in full swing for David Malukas after placing collectively a outstanding displaying in knockout qualifying that ended with him beginning third for Sunday’s IndyCar Collection race at Mid-Ohio Sports activities Automobile Course.

It was solely the second qualifying outing of the 12 months for the 22-year-old after an low season wrist damage led to surgical procedure and led to the termination of his Arrow McLaren contract earlier than occurring to affix Meyer Shank Racing.

Malukas made his season debut in MSR’s No. 66 Honda within the final spherical at Laguna Seca with a wrist that was 80% recovered from a mountain biking accident that required surgical procedure. He certified twelfth and was en path to a doable high 10 earlier than a late puncture relegated him to sixteenth.

On Saturday, Malukas turned the wick up at MSR’s hometrack in Lexington, Ohio. He was second quickest in Group 1 qualifying earlier than settling in fourth throughout the High 12 to get into the Quick Six, the place he hit a lap of 1m05.6509s across the 2.258-mile, 13-turn pure terrain highway course.

In the long run, he fell 0.2974s brief from the pole time of 1m05.3511s set by Chip Ganassi Racing’s Alex Palou.

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The consequence matched a career-best for Malukas, who beforehand certified third within the second race of the doubleheader at Iowa Speedway final 12 months.

“Speak about a turnaround,” Malukas mentioned. “This 12 months has been an emotional rollercoaster and simply wanting again on the whole lot, I’ve been allowed to achieve my max potential.

“At Laguna there was a lot tempo there however with the hand, I needed to break it in and get it again to the place it must be. I knew coming into right here the blokes have accomplished an unimaginable job prepping the automobile, and Josh (engineer) with Honda did an superior job as properly.

“I knew that the arrange was there and the automobile was there and we simply needed to put it collectively. It was an ideal scenario for me and I couldn’t be happier.”

David Malukas, Meyer Shank Racing Honda

Picture by: Josh Tons / Motorsport Images

Malukas paid tribute to his new crew, and the way rapidly they’ve been in a position to gel collectively.

“This crew, the chemistry they’ve arrange for me, they’ve given me an awesome surroundings,” he mentioned. “Going into Laguna, there was lots of overthinking, how the hand was going to do, and the whole lot was new – as quickly as we have been quick there, I used to be like ‘oh man, that is going to be actually good’.

“I’ve made just a few small modifications with my driving to swimsuit the hand, however I knew from all of the work we’d accomplished on the sim that we’d be very fast right here. I really feel unimaginable right here and it’s a giant crew effort.”



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