Edmonton I: Walker Racing race report

Action Packed Day for Walker Racing in Race One of Edmonton Doubleheader Edmonton, Alberta, Canada -- It was an action packed day for Walker Racing at the Edmonton City Centre Airport as both drivers, Simona De Silvestro ( ...

Action Packed Day for Walker Racing in Race One of Edmonton Doubleheader

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada -- It was an action packed day for Walker Racing at the Edmonton City Centre Airport as both drivers, Simona De Silvestro (#5 Miauton) and Ryan Lewis (#15 NCPI Solutions/InSport) drove their hearts out in race one of the Rexall Grand Prix of Edmonton Champ Car Atlantic doubleheader.

Despite starting and finishing in the same position she qualified with yesterday, De Silvestro proved that the 1.973 temporary street course was right up her alley. The 18-year old had another good clean start from thirteenth position, but after trying to pass J.R. Hildebrand in turn ten, the Swiss Miss caused the second yellow of the session by running into the #36 car and had to make an unscheduled pit stop to repair her right front toe-link and tire. The incident resulted in a black flag penalty and from that point on De Silvestro fought her way up the grid to finish in thirteenth position.

It was the same story for Lewis as well, who like his teammate, started and finished with the same position he qualified. The Englishman started ninth on the grid and moved his way up the ladder, but after an ambitious move on the part of John Edwards in turn five, Lewis had to swerve out of the way and right into the grass, filtering him to the back of the pack as a result. Making the most out of a bad situation, Lewis went from eighteenth back up to ninth, putting him one point out of the top ten for the Cooper Tires Presents the Champ Car Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda.

The green flag drops tomorrow at 12:30 p.m. ET for the final race of the doubleheader weekend at the Rexall Grand Prix of Edmonton. Both Lewis and De Silvestro will start eleventh and twelfth respectively. For more updates on the team please visit www.walkerracing.com.

What they had to say:

Ryan Lewis: "It was youthful exuberance on John Edwards part again. Robert got past and got a good run on me into one on the restart, so I had to slow up a little bit to let him get through and the group in front of me were quite slow through high speeds and it was quite hard to follow each other. John decided he was going to have a go up the inside at five and I think he was lucky enough that I'm probably one of the more experienced guys on the grid and I didn't turn in on him. He'll learn. Other than that, it caused me to run into the grass and put me right in the back of the field. Luckily we got another safety car to pack us all up and from then on it was making the best of a bad situation. Obviously we had a very strong car and we were running the same pace as the lead guys. I was really happy with the car."

Simona De Silvestro: "It was an interesting race for sure. I ran into Hildebrand, because he made a mistake coming out of turn eight, so I was faster than him and I tried to go inside, but making the move lost me some time and I saw that I wasn't quite in. I was braking but Hildebrand didn't make enough room, so I kind of t-boned him. After that I had a problem with the steering and my steering was all messed up, so on the straights my steering wasn't straight, so it was a little difficult to go straight and turn on the left corners, because one tire was completely out. Overall it was okay, I saved what I could save and I think tomorrow if we are where we are and we keep going up, then it will be better."

Derrick Walker: "It was not the finish that we had hoped for. I think Simona's car was clearly better than a fourteenth place car, but unfortunately the incident with Hildebrand damaged the front suspension and the car didn't handle well enough to do more than what Simona did. It's all apart of the learning curve and I think the car will be better tomorrow and we will have another chance to prove it. It's a pity Ryan got caught up in the incident early on in the race, because his car and his aggressive driving style was creating some good moves through the pack to come back to ninth. It just shows the potential is there, we just have to catch a break and I think we'll show what we can do."

-credit: walkerracing

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About this article
Series Atlantic
Drivers Ryan Lewis , J.R. Hildebrand , John Edwards