Toronto: Series race notes

TORONTO - Saturday, July 11, 2009 - Sebastian Saavedra passed J.R. Hildebrand on Lap 18 of 50 and went on to a 5.8630-second victory over his AFS Racing/Andretti Green Racing teammate in the caution-free Firestone Indy Lights Grand Prix of ...

TORONTO - Saturday, July 11, 2009 - Sebastian Saavedra passed J.R. Hildebrand on Lap 18 of 50 and went on to a 5.8630-second victory over his AFS Racing/Andretti Green Racing teammate in the caution-free Firestone Indy Lights Grand Prix of Toronto.

James Hinchcliffe, a Toronto native, finished third -- for the fourth time this season - in the No. 7 Hinchtown/Sam Schmidt Motorsports car, and Stefan Wilson finished a season-high fourth in the No. 19 Walker Racing car.

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FIRESTONE INDY LIGHTS GRAND PRIX OF TORONTO POST-RACE NOTES:

* This is Sebastian Saavedra's second win of the season and the second of his Firestone Indy Lights career. He previously won on the oval at Kansas Speedway in April.

* This is AFS Racing/Andretti Green Racing's fourth win of the season and the eighth win for the team since they joined forces in 2007.

* J.R. Hildebrand finished second, his sixth podium finish in nine starts this season.

* James Hinchcliffe finished third for the fourth time this season, which ties his season-best finish.

* Stefan Wilson finished a career-best fourth place. His previous best was 12th at Watkins Glen last weekend.

* James Davison finished fifth, his third top-five in four races.

* Richard Philippe led one lap, his first lap led in the Firestone Indy Lights.

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FIRESTONE INDY LIGHTS GRAND PRIX OF TORONTO POST-RACE QUOTES:

SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA (No. 27 Automatic Fire Sprinklers, race winner): "It wasn't easy, I'm telling you. This is one of the hardest tracks I've been to in wet conditions and dry conditions. We made a pit stop, things we're not use to. The 27 crew did an awesome job. I'm very happy for AFS/Andretti Green Racing. Points are points. We're thinking about the championship and that's what is important.

J.R. HILDEBRAND (No. 26 ARPRO, finished second): "We definitely salvaged a good finish out of that. I really owe it to the boys in the pits. They really did an awesome job with the pit stop. I hit the wall early and bent the rear suspension pretty badly, like five or six laps into the race, so I was just hanging on for most of the race. I thought maybe I could stick with Sebastian (Saavedra) because I was sort of keeping up with him for most of the middle segment, and the thing just started going haywire on me through the fast stuff, so after I almost wrecked the car a couple of times. I just backed off and I thought we'd get it to the finish. It was good for the boys, and we'll see what we've got in a couple of weeks in Edmonton."

JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 7 Hinchtown/Sam Schmidt Motorsports): "Man, what a tough race. With the conditions changing like that and having to do live pit stops for the first time in my career in Firestone Indy Lights was a bit exciting. The car was really good. The SSM (Sam Schmidt Motorsports) guys gave us a great car all weekend. Qualifying on the front row and bringing it home on the podium was great. I think we lost a little time on the pit stop but we were running consistent race laps after that, so I've got to be happy with a hometown podium. I've got to thank all of my friends and family. It was a great weekend, and like I said, it was tough in those changing positions but we had good Firestone Firehawks in the rain and good Firestone Firehawks in the dry, so it was a great weekend."

STEFAN WILSON: (No. 19 Walker Racing, finished fourth): "It was good, I was quick in the wet and soon as it started to dry out, we pitted for slicks at just the right time, and it was the right choice. We were really quick straight away when we exited the pits and were probably the fastest car on the track. Towards the end, the car started to go off and I had a few problems inside the cockpit so by the last 10 laps there was no way I was going to catch Hinch (Hinchcliffe), so I just preserved and kept my fourth place which is my best finish all year.

JAMES DAVISON (No. 21 People*s Liberation, finished fifth): "We were running second and the track dried out to the point where everyone had to pit and get off the rain tires because we just couldn't turn anymore. And then there was a very big miscue with my pit stop I'm not quite sure what happened but we lost like 30 seconds and I went all the way back probably nearly to last. I've never driven so hard in my life to get through the field and secure a top five so I've gotta be happy with my drive. A bit disappointed with the result considering we had the speed to win today but people know we're quick and our time will come."

-credit: irl

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About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Sam Schmidt , James Davison , Richard Philippe , James Hinchcliffe , Sebastian Saavedra , J.R. Hildebrand , Stefan Wilson