Portland: Ryan Lewis race notes

RYAN LEWIS SCORES ON U.S. DEBUT British racing driver, Ryan Lewis, took an incredible second-placed podium finish on his Champ Car Atlantic debut at Portland International Raceway yesterday (18 June 2006). Ryan's Mi-Jack Conquest Racing ...

RYAN LEWIS SCORES ON U.S. DEBUT

British racing driver, Ryan Lewis, took an incredible second-placed podium finish on his Champ Car Atlantic debut at Portland International Raceway yesterday (18 June 2006).

Ryan's Mi-Jack Conquest Racing team-mate, Graham Rahal, started the race from pole position but was hit from behind at the start by the car in P2. After qualifying 4th, Ryan was perfectly placed to storm through to the front of the field. He led for 15 laps before Brazilian driver Raphael Matos got past him on a restart; but Ryan returned the favour just a few laps later with a superb overtaking manoeuvre.

As he headed for the dream result the young Brit was struck by transmission gremlins and he began to lose gears. James Hinchcliffe, running in P2, took the opportunity to snatch the lead with just two laps to go, forcing Ryan to settle for second place.

"I wanted to come out of this weekend with a top five finish. I've come away with a second place and points for the championship which is great. It's just a shame that I couldn't finish on the top step. I was able to jump up to the front on the start but then I lost the lead on the restart to Matos," said Ryan. "I put my head down and continued to push hard and finally got back around him. Then at the end I lost third and fourth gear and had to give up the lead. Fortunately, I was able to keep second and it is a great way to start the season with the Mi-Jack Conquest Racing Team. They did a great job all weekend and made it easy for me."

Problems aside it was a fantastic finish for a rookie and Ryan will be setting his targets higher for the next event. Attention now turns to Cleveland for the next rounds of the Champ Car Atlantic Series in a few days' time. It's a double-header weekend with a race on Saturday and one on Sunday.

-ryanlewisracing.co.uk

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About this article
Series Atlantic
Drivers Graham Rahal , Ryan Lewis , James Hinchcliffe
Teams Conquest Racing