Ricardo Juncos stated even he underestimated the fervour his fellow Argentinians have for motorsports throughout Juncos Hollinger Racing’s promotional journey to the nation this week.
The NTT INDYCAR SERIES staff was showcased in a collection of high-profile occasions, highlighted by a competition at Circuit Termas de Rio Hondo, a street course the place MotoGP has raced since 2013.
“Sure, it was loopy, man,” Juncos stated Thursday earlier than returning to Indianapolis, the place the staff he co-owns with Brad Hollinger is predicated. “We did the exhibition yesterday, on a Wednesday, in the midst of the week, and it was solely (one NTT INDYCAR SERIES automobile) on the observe.
“We predicted 3,000 to five,000 folks, however what confirmed up was greater than 15,000 folks. It was unbelievable; it was big. I’m very, very completely happy.”
The 2-hour occasion, which had a carnival environment with music and actions accenting the on-track laps pushed by Argentine touring automobile champion Agustin Canapino, was streamed stay on the staff’s YouTube channel.
Juncos fashioned Juncos Competitors in Argentina in 1997. Upon transferring to the U.S. in 2003, Juncos progressed the staff via the assorted open-wheel divisions earlier than debuting within the NTT INDYCAR SERIES with two automobiles within the 2017 Indianapolis 500 offered by Gainbridge.
This 12 months, Juncos Hollinger Racing fielded rookie Callum Ilott in a full-season effort, and so they began on the entrance row for the season-ending race, the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.
This promotional tour started with the Juncos Hollinger Racing’s automobile on show final Friday night time on the in style Michelangelo restaurant within the capital metropolis of Buenos Aires. The staff then was on observe as a part of a race weekend at Circuit of Buenos Aires, with greater than 50,000 witnessing an NTT INDYCAR SERIES automobile at pace for the primary time since 1971.
And get this: Juncos stated a lot of these folks didn’t even get to see the automobile full its demonstration laps.
“Three hours later folks have been nonetheless coming in as a result of they couldn’t make it (earlier),” he stated. “We have been completed (working) however they nonetheless got here, three hours later, simply to take an image of an (NTT INDYCAR SERIES) automobile. That’s unbelievable.
“(The followers) in Argentina are fanatics; they go loopy for motor racing.”
Canapino, 32, has received a number of touring automobile championships within the nation and is “the most well-liked driver in Argentina,” in accordance with Juncos. The staff principal stated Canapino was “unbelievable” within the automobile as anticipated, and he hopes to have him drive for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES staff sooner or later, particularly if the nation lands a race on the calendar.
Canapino drove with Juncos’ sports activities automobile staff in 2019 within the Rolex 24 At Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring.
Juncos stated the purpose of the weeklong occasion in Argentina was three-fold, starting with a possibility to point out an precise collection automobile to the individuals who final noticed one stay when Al Unser received the Indy 300 held in 1971 on the Rafaela Autodromo, an oval observe that opened in 1953.
Juncos additionally wished to honor the Argentinean firms that sponsor the staff whereas providing NTT INDYCAR SERIES officers an opportunity to see the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit so it may be thought of for a collection race sooner or later.
Juncos, whose workers organized the journey, stated every part went to plan.
“I feel we completed every part,” he stated proudly.
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