STRONG START, BUT EARLY END TO HONDA INDY 200 FOR CONQUEST RACING
Lexington, Ohio (Aug. 7, 2011) – After an impressive start, Sunday’s Honda Indy 200 came to a disappointing end for Conquest Racing when the No. 34 car ended up in the Turn 2 tire barrier at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Driver Sebastian Saaevdra made the most of a good start and gained two positions in the early laps, running solid lap times and keeping pace with the leaders.
Half-way through the first stint, the Conquest Racing Bogota es Mundial car started developing some understeer and Saavedra fought hard to keep his position. He made a mistake on Lap 20 at the braking of Turn 2 and went off in the tire barrier, ending his race.
The IZOD IndyCar rookie showed good pace throughout the weekend’s practice sessions and was regularly among the Top 15 on the speed chart, but qualifying didn’t go his way as the balance on the alternative tires was not as good as on primaries.
The team competes again next weekend in the MoveThatBlock.com Indy 225 in Loudon, New Hampshire.
Sebastian Saavedra, No. 34 Conquest Racing Bogota es Mundial Driver
“We had a great start. We were strong in the first five laps, and I took advantage of it to gain a couple of positions. Unfortunately our red tires were a problem. We knew we weren’t going to be very strong on the reds, so we wanted to take them out of the equation on the first stint. But 10 laps into the race I didn’t have any front tires left – they were completely gone and there were still 12 more laps to the pit window. Unfortunately I made a mistake and locked it up in Turn 2, and there was nothing to do but take it into the tire wall. It was a tough weekend. Sometimes it happens, sometimes not. I’ll just try to learn from these experiences and focus on the next one.”
Eric Bachelart, Conquest Racing Team Owner
“We were competitive during most of the practice sessions and Sebastian drove aggressively during the whole weekend. The qualifying position was a disappointment but Sebastian did some good moves early in the race and gained two positions. It is a shame he went in the tire wall after missing his braking as I felt we could have a very good finish in Mid-Ohio. We will take some lessons from yesterday's race and move on next weekend back on an oval at New Hampshire.“