Panther Racing press release
Panther's JR Hildebrand Qualifies 11th at New Hampshire Motor Speedway
IZOD IndyCar Series Rookie of the Year Leader Finished Fourth in Last Oval Start at Iowa Speedway
LOUDON, NH. (August 13, 2011) – National Guard Panther Racing driver JR Hildebrand qualified in the 11th position for tomorrow’s MoveThatBlock.com Indy 225 from New Hampshire Motor Speedway, where the IZOD IndyCar Series will be returning after a more than decade-long hiatus.
Hildebrand posted qualification lap times of 167.533 mph (22.0255 seconds) and 168.563 mph (21.8909 seconds) for a combined two-lap average lap speed of 168.047 mph.
In his last oval start at Iowa Speedway Hildebrand qualified and finished in fourth position, in what was one of the best drives of his young career – passing perennial front-runners Ryan Briscoe and Dario Franchitti in the last 15 laps to secure the finish. Tomorrow will mark his first career start on New Hampshire’s one-mile oval.
Ganassi Racing driver Dario Franchitti captured the pole position and will be joined on the front row by Newman/Haas driver Oriol Servia.
Currently, Hildebrand has a 37-point lead in the IZOD IndyCar Series Rookie of the Year point standings over James Hinchcliffe, who will start on the second row tomorrow. Panther is currently in the tenth position in the overall championship standings and Hildebrand ranks in eighth in the oval-specific points race, with a best career finish or second place at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway earlier this year.