Alberico Bounces Back At Sebring
SEBRING, Fla. – Neil Alberico began the season as a hot favorite for top honors in this year’s Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda after winning five of six races in the Cooper Tires Winterfest mini-series last month.
His regular season began with disappointment yesterday in the first of two races at Sebring Int’l Raceway when his Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing Van Diemen-Mazda encountered a problem at the start, but the 20-year-old Californian rebounded magnificently this morning as he took a convincing victory in round two.
Teammate and first round winner Scott Hargrove started from the pole but slipped back to third during an eventful first lap which saw Garett Grist in the #7 DaVinci Foods entry take the lead for Andretti Autosport, while Alberico managed to fight his way from fifth on the grid to second.
An incident farther down the 31-car field brought out the caution flags at the end of Lap 1, and after a lengthy cleanup Alberico once again leapt into action, vaulting past Grist into a lead he never looked likely to relinquish. Grist, who had charged impressively from ninth to second in yesterday’s opener, was unable to carry that form into today’s race, slipping back to fifth place by the finish.