Long Beach, Calif. (Sunday, April 10, 2022) – Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports rookie David Malukas got off to a strong start for his first Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, but a series of unfortunate events meant he would see his race end with nine laps to go.
• Malukas rode strong on his debut at the Long Beach Grand Prix, having finished 11th before making his first pit stop on lap 29.
• Unfortunately for the rookie, he crossed the pit exit line too early on his way back to the track and had to serve a driving penalty.
• The penalty sent him to the back of the pack, but still in the lead lap.
• Malukas then had to return to the pit lane around 30 laps later to have his belt tightened for safety reasons, but that ultimately relegated him to two laps behind the leaders.
• A final unfortunate event occurred on lap 76 when he finally made contact with the tire barrier at turn 8 while trying to avoid a spinning Jimmie Johnson.
David Malukas #18 HMD Honda – Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Motorsports
“I’ve had a few bruises and blisters since my first Grand Prix at Long Beach but what a series of unfortunate events this race has been! I started strong while saving the black tires, hoping we could make them last longer long and play with our strategy. However, after leaving the pit lane with a set of red tires, I crossed the line too soon, which is a shame. After serving my drive-through penalty, I was still in the head lap so it was fine but one of my belts came undone and I had to go back to the pit lane to get it fixed and that lost me two laps.
“At that point I just wanted to get him home, but with about 10 laps to go Jimmie Johnson spun around Turn 8 and I did my best to get out of the way. out of its way but I cut the tire barrier and damaged the front end of my HMD car and that was the end of my race I really like the track here in Long Beach and wish things are going better but we were unlucky this weekend we had a really good test at Barber in October in my first test with the team so hopefully things can change for us at this race in a few weeks.