Homestead: Team Stargate Worlds qualifying report

Team Stargate Worlds drivers De Silvestro and Bomarito take on The 2009 Cooper Tires Presents the Atlantic Championship Powered By Mazda season finale got underway under chilly and foggy conditions at the famed Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Team ...

Team Stargate Worlds drivers De Silvestro and Bomarito take on

The 2009 Cooper Tires Presents the Atlantic Championship Powered By Mazda season finale got underway under chilly and foggy conditions at the famed Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Team Stargate Worlds driver Simona De Silvestro, who currently leads the championship battle over Newman Wach's Jonathan Summerton, arrived this weekend hoping to put an exclamation point on this season's effort by winning the championship. Meanwhile her teammate, and local driver, Jonathan Bomarito was looking for a rewarding finish at his home track. On Friday both drivers had successful practice sessions and with qualifying next, the pair were optimistic about their chances at qualifying well.

Cloudy skies and temperatures in the low fifties greeted the Team Stargate Worlds duo Saturday morning. De Silvestro and her crew spent the morning prepping for the 40-minute qualifying session. As the green flag dropped she roared down pit lane and soon began putting up decent lap times. De Silvestro, who currently resides in Scottsdale, Arizona saw her times float around the fifth spot on the time sheets. Halfway through the session a red flag came out as a result of an off-track excursion by one of the Atlantic drivers. The interruption disrupted the momentum. Undeterred, De Silvestro re-entered the track once the green flag was displayed and immediately improved positions by regaining her fifth place spot. As the final minutes ticked away De Silvestro continued to focus on her lap times and was able to put in a time that maintained her fifth place spot. Though the result was not what she was hoping for De Silvestro and crew are looking forward to finishing the final race of the season on a high point.

For his part Monterey, California resident Jonathan Bomarito, in only his second race with the team, got into his #77 Team Stargate Worlds entry and began to put up very competitive times. Bomarito's times jumped around from fourth to seventh. He came into the pits to change tires and also spent an extended time in the pits as a result of the red flag. Bomarito regained his focus and tenacity after the red flag and once back on-track he began aggressively carving around the circuit. His efforts would be rewarded as he managed to eat away at the deficit between him and the cars in front of him. With minutes left and pressure mounting he would go on to put in a lap time that propelled him to the third spot on the grid. The session would finish with Bomarito earning a third place on the timesheets. This represents Jonathan's best starting spot of the season.

Simona De Silvestro - "It was a little bit of a tough qualifying session as we wanted to be in the front. I'm confident in knowing that I have a great race car and a great team that will do their best. A lot can happen tomorrow so I'm going to do the best that I can possibly do and hopefully we can finish this season on a very high note. Much appreciation goes to the team for their phenomenal effort in getting me here."

Jonathan Bomarito - "The session was rough for us actually. We were on different plan than everybody else. Because it's a 40-minute qualifying session, we started with old tires and wanted to go to two new sets, but with it being this cold outside, it was taking too long for the tires to come in. The race being at 1 tomorrow, I think, will play into our advantage."

-credit: tsw

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Series INDYLIGHTS