SAAVEDRA HAS STRONG SHOWING AT SAO PAULO INDY 300
SAO PAULO, BRAZIL (May 3, 2011) - Conquest Racing’s Sebastian Saavedra had his best finish of the season on the slippery streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil. After running as high as third in the rain-postponed Itaipava Sao Paulo Indy 300 presented by Nestle, Saavedra was 11th when the checkered flag waved.
Persistent rain caused poor visibility on the 2.536-mile, 11-turn street course, forcing IndyCar to postpone the race after only 14 laps were completed on Sunday. The race resumed Monday morning with 1 hour, 19 minutes, 14 seconds remaining in the two-hour window.
Saavedra, who qualified 23rd and was 11th when the race resumed, was able to stay out of trouble in the #34 car when many more experienced drivers had difficulty controlling their cars on the wet pavement. The re-start of the race was cautioned-filled and the Conquest team took a chance on an alternate pit strategy. The 20-year-old Colombian climbed to fourth when the team chose to stay out when many of the leading cars pitted. He claimed P3 when EJ Viso was black-flagged for blocking.
Rolling the dice didn’t pay off for the team, as the track conditions improved. Without a much-needed caution, they were forced to pit late in the race and give up position.
Eric Bachelart, Conquest Racing Team Owner
"Sebastian was very mature and he did not make any mistakes during the whole race. The conditions were very difficult and he was careful when needed while at the same time he pushed harder towards the end of the race and showed a fast pace. This is a good result and a good momentum before the Indy 500."
The IZOD IndyCar Rookie of the Year candidate is 20th in the championship, just 7 points behind JR Hildebrand who currently holds the top rookie spot. The Conquest Racing team will now focus on preparing for running in the 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500 on May 29.