Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin (June 24, 2018) – Juncos Racing’s Victor Franzoni earned his first pole and win of his career in the Indy Lights Championship Presented by Cooper Tires this weekend in the Mazda Grand Prix Indy Lights of Road America Presented by Cooper Tires. This win was not only his first win, but an extremely emotional moment for the young Brazilian as he paid tribute to former Pro Mazda Championship teammate Jeff Green who tragically passed away last weekend.

The fifth weekend of competition for the Indy Lights Championship began with one practice session, followed by two qualifying sessions before Rounds 8 and 9 on the 14-turn, 4.014 mile road course.

Victor Franzoni, driving the No. 23 Mazda/Juncos Racing car, dominated his way through the first qualifying session and came away with is first Indy Lights career pole. Franzoni was to start second for Round 9.

Mistakes cursed the young rookie during the first race of the weekend. Fighting through the mistakes, Franzoni finished the race on the podium with a third place finish.

Round 9 started off in a dramatic fashion, after dropping to third Franzoni was gaining on the leaders. Battling for position, the leaders edged each other off track and Franzoni capitalized on the mistakes made taking the lead. In a commanding fashion, he came to his first Indy Lights career win with slightly over an 8 second lead.

“This was a good weekend for us.” said Franzoni. “Even though I started from the pole in Round 8 I had one of the worst races in my career, I made so many mistakes. I went off track three times by myself. We had the car to finish either first or second but I ended finishing third. In Round 9, after starting second I dropped to third. The guys running P1 and P2 forced each other off track and I was able to pass them. After that, I ran a really good race. I believe that it is one of the best in my career. The first win always opens doors to more and more wins. I want to thank Juncos Racing, Mazda, and Team Cooper Tires for the opportunity they gave me. I am very excited for the rest of the championship.”

Team Owner Ricardo Juncos said, “This was a great weekend overall for Victor (Franzoni) and the team. Even though he wasn’t able to keep the lead in the first race he was still able to find his way to victory circle in the final race. Victor has worked so hard all year to get to this point. He is a true driver and deserves this victory. We have had a hard week after the passing of Jeff Green, so this win was incredibly emotional for Victor and the team. I want to thank the entire MRTI staff and all of the teams for showing their support of Jeff and his family by placing decals on their cars.”

Franzoni not only drove his Indy Lights car during the Indy Lights sessions but also before Round 9 of the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires to honor his late friend, Jeff Green. “Myself, Peter Dempsey, and Ricardo Juncos all played a role in honoring Jeff (Green) this weekend,” explained Franzoni. “Ricardo said a few words and then gave the command to start engines, Peter drove Jeff’s car from last year, and I drove my Indy Lights car. It was really nice to be able to run side by side to Peter. It was an emotional lap to make. I think it was a very nice tribute. I really want to thank Mazda Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires for the opportunity to honor Jeff in such a way this weekend.”

The 2018 Indy Lights Championship continues July 7th – 8th with Round 10 at Iowa Speedway.

Photo Credit: Photos @ Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography