IPS: St. Pete doubleheader for Matos

Raphael Matos swept the Indy Pro Series doubleheader at St. Petersburg Fla. after dominating Sunday's second round. Matos crossed the finish line 5.72 seconds ahead of second place finisher Jay Howard, who led six laps shortly after the ...

Raphael Matos swept the Indy Pro Series doubleheader at St. Petersburg Fla. after dominating Sunday's second round. Matos crossed the finish line 5.72 seconds ahead of second place finisher Jay Howard, who led six laps shortly after the start.

Jonathan Klein started on the outside of the front row and managed to lead the first lap. On the second lap Howard dove to the inside of Klein at the first corner, taking the lead until Matos took the point using an identical tactic at the same place.

"It's been like a dream come true," said Matos, who was never challenged once in the lead. "Everything was perfect this race. Today I had everything sorted out."

Howard's technique of diving to the inside of the first turn was getting stale by the time the second race took place on Sunday morning. "I was able to study what Jay was doing on the restart," said Matos. "I tried different lines on every restart," putting me in position to win.

Alex Lloyd started tenth and finished third, pressuring Howard in the final laps. "I had nothing to lose," said Lloyd. "Going through the first half of the race, it was great working my way through the field. After that it was just difficult."

While Matos pulled away at the point, Howard and Lloyd were involved in a three-way battle with Jeff Simmons. "It's difficult being in the middle," said Matos. "You want to attack but you have to defend (against Simmons) too."

After finishing fourth, Simmons said that his car was "much better towards the end. We were definitely quicker than the guys ahead of us on the longer run."

Jonathan Klein finished fifth followed by Bobby Wilson and Matthew Hamilton in seventh.

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Series Indy Lights
Drivers Jeff Simmons , Alex Lloyd , Bobby Wilson , Jay Howard , Jonathan Klein