Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Conquest Racing Enlists Indy Lights Mario Romancini For IndyCar Ride

Photo Credit: Christopher Nagy/XSL Speed Reporter

Scrambling ahead of an upcoming test at Barber Motorsports Park for the IZOD IndyCar series, multiple teams have taken this past week to cement their 2010 driver lineups. As the fourth driver announcement in a week, Conquest Racing has tabbed 22-year old Brazilian Mario Romancini to pilot their #34 entry for the 2010 IZOD IndyCar Series tour.

Winning at the Milwaukee Mile with a flag-to-flag victory from pole position, Romancini's also won the 2009 season finale for the Firestone Indy Lights Series at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In one full season in the Firestone Indy Lights Series, he placed 6th overall in points. Before Indy Lights, Romancini competed in Brazilian Formula Renault 2.0 in 2006 and the South American Formula 3 in 2007. In South American Formula 3, Mario Romancini was runner-up in the series' overall championship scoring two F3 victories.

Having ties dating back to the original Indy Lights Series in the 1990s, Conquest Racing finances were strained through 2009 due to sponsorship woes. Starting off the past season with Canadian Alex Tagliani, the lack of money meant that Tagliani's year with Conquest Racing was cut to only 6 events (two of which being the Canadian races in Toronto and Edmonton). Missing some races in 2009, Conquest Racing did contend additional IndyCar races with drivers Nelson Philippe and Kosuke Matsuura.

Despite Conquest Racing's limited resources for the 2009 IndyCar Series, the team enjoyed a memorable effort in the year's Indianapolis 500 race. Starting 33rd, the combined efforts of Alex Tagliani and the pit crew would vault 22 positions to finish 11th. A deeply grateful Tagliani was awarded the 2009 Indy 500 rookie of the year honour driving the Conquest Racing car.

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