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NEWS 2024

Aron Top 5 Pace in First Ever Street Race

Bryce Aron embarked on his first ever street race with Andretti Global at The Streets of St. Pete. After some early mechanical issues in the first practice session, Bryce quickly got up to speed. Bryce’s third session ever on the street circuit took place during a disrupted qualifying session, in which Bryce qualified fourth, in his group, and was the fastest rookie. 

 

The Indy NXT Grid at St. Pete was comprised of 21 drivers. Bryce was the only driver who had never driven on a street circuit. The average Indy NXT driver was in their fourth year of experience on the Streets of St. Pete street circuit. This made Bryce’s adaptability and pace that much more impressive. 

Bryce Aron Racing Streets of St Pete for. Andretti

Photo Credit:Joe Skibinski

Aron Fifth Fastest at St. Pete

Aron 5th Fastest Overall on First Street Circuit 

Source: IndyNXT.com

On Sunday, as the green flags were waved Bryce had a great start from P8. Bryce made it up to P6 and was focused on preserving his tires and saving push to pass for the final portion of the race. With 12 laps remaining, Bryce saw the opportunity to go for a podium position and chose to pick up his pace. Late braking in Turn 10 led to contact with the wall and an end to what had been a strong debut.

 

There were a lot of positives to take away from Bryce’s first Indy NXT race weekend. Bryce was fifth fastest overall and third fastest driver on five and ten lap pace.

"It was an unfortunate end there in the race today. I just made a mistake into Turn 10 that caused me to hit the wall. I tried to correct it, but there’s not much margin for error there. But overall, it’s been a positive weekend for us and I think we were very quick and adapted really well. It’s my first time on a street circuit and everyone at Andretti has been really crucial in helping me get up to speed. It's a shame the weekend ended the way it did, but we’ll move on and be stronger at the next one." - Bryce Aron

Streets of St. Pete

Aron Wins in New Zealand

Bryce Aron started off his 2024 season with a win in New Zealand. Bryce jumped into the Formula Regional Oceania series for the final 2 rounds, having never driven a formula regional car or driven in New Zealand. Aron was joined by two Indy NXT drivers, both of whom had the advantage of competing in the entire 2023 New Zealand based championship. While all three drivers had some impressive results, Aron was the only one to claim a win and also the only one to claim a fastest lap during his short visit. (Link to Results)

 

The New Zealand Grand Prix, one of only two official Grand Prix’s sanctioned by the FIA outside of Formula 1, features an F1 style qualifying, with a three phase knockout. All drivers compete in Q1, with the fastest 13 drivers moving on to Q2. The 8 fastest drivers from Q2 then move onto Q3. Bryce made it through all three qualifying sessions. 

Bryce Aron Wins New Zealand Grand Prix Weekend
Bryce Aron Wins in New Zealand

Drivers are given two sets of sticker new tires for the entire race weekend, including qualifying. The drivers who made it through the third qualifying session all used both sets of tires. Drivers who did not make it to Q2 or Q3  would have a set of new tires and a set of only slightly used tires. 

 

The weekend would play out with Bryce taking pole in race 2. Typically, drivers use their newest tires when they start from pole, but Bryce and his team decided that he would compete on his most used tires in order to save his newer (still used) set for the longer final race. Bryce used the same tires he used in Q1, Q2 and Race 1, for Race 2, they had been used for more than 150 kilometers, which is a lot for racing tires.

Bryce had a great start from pole, getting off the line quicker than anyone on the grid. Bryce managed his old tires throughout the race fending off the series champion who was on much newer tires. This was probably the most exciting race of the weekend as it featured a prolonged intense battle at the front of the field.  The series champion, who had made easy work passing the rest of the field, could not get by Bryce. Despite continuous pressure, Bryce kept the competiton at bay, leading the entire race and claiming a well earned victory!

Photo Credit: Clint Thambi (Mad Angles Photography)

Aron Wins in New Zealand
Bryce Aron stuns with pace in New Zealand

Category: Single Seater | Written by: Supplied

 

US aces in mix for big Castrol Toyota FR Oceania weekend in Christchurch

Date:February 9, 2024 | Photographer Credit: Bruce Jenkins

 

Championship leader Roman Bilinski maintained his competitiveness ahead of the fourth round of the 2024 Castrol Toyota FR Oceania Championship in Christchurch, but for once in a great season, he wasn’t the centre of attention.

 

That honour went to debuting Bryce Aron out of the United States aboard his M2 Competition Toyota FT60 and countryman Jacob Abel aboard his MTEC Motorsport car and it was the two Americans who had everyone talking at the Euromarque Motorsport Park, Christchurch today.

 

INDY NXT ace Abel – who finished third in the championship in 2023 and is back for the final two rounds of the 2024 series – followed up his Thursday testing form with another eye-catching performance in the first practice session, completing it in second place behind Bilinski.

 

Another surprise in the opening run was Aron, another to sign-up for the last two rounds but without the experience of a full season behind him like Abel. His third place ahead of top Kiwi Liam Sceats and fifth placed Michael Shin was impressive and a marker for what was to come during the rest of the day at the Christchurch circuit.

 

The morning session brought rain and slow lap times but with track conditions so changeable the previous weekend at Hampton Downs, some of the leading drivers were keen to try slicks in the final minutes as the surface improved. Bilinski, Gerrard Xie and Kaleb Ngatoa all made the switch with eight minutes to go and put in their best laps of the opening session.

 

Aron – a contracted Andretti Global driver highly regarded in the USA – was fully into the groove by the second session, pushing the best lap recorded marker down into the 1 minute 17 second bracket, an impressive lap time around the 3.33km track, even allowing for the fact that a lot of the runners used this session for a run on brand new Pirelli slicks.

 

Only Giles Motorsport’s Ngatoa and Bilinski were able to match him in the session and dip under 1 minute 18 seconds and they ended it second and third fastest.

 

Patrick Woods-Toth was another to go well having set the pace on Thursday and he finished up fourth for Kiwi Motorsport ahead of Abel. Jett Bowling in another Kiwi Motorsport entry put in one of his best runs so far in the championship to take sixth fastest time just two and half tenths off Aron with countryman Titus Sherlock eighth and Kiwis Sceats and Alex Crosbie ninth and tenth.

 

In the third and final 30-minute session before the weekend it was Xie, Bilinski and Woods-Toth who traded fastest time early on before Roman set a 1 minute 17.821 lap. That was marginally quicker than Aron’s second session time and would stand as quickest of the day. Ngatoa went close but had to settle for second while Alex Crosbie looked like a contender with third fastest time. Michael Shin was fourth and Aron was there again with fifth fastest time ahead of Xie, Woods-Toth, Bowling, Sherlock and Sceats.

 

With unofficial testing and practice complete, the 15 car field gets down to business on Saturday morning with qualifying and the first race of the weekend in the afternoon.

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