Saavedra at Texas

Submitted by on Monday, 09 June 2014 17:04


By Kevin Diamond


FORT WORTH, TEXAS - June 7, 2014 - Sebastian Saavedra's long weekend in the office resulted in him 17th tonight at the Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway in Ft. Worth, Texas. 


Having qualified the No. 17 Automatic Fire Sprinklers, Inc. - KV AFS Racing Chevrolet/Dallara/Firestone a disappointing 19th yesterday, the team made some changes today, to try and provide Saavedra a more balanced racecar. When the green flag was shown this evening, he made an immediate charge and by lap five, when the first yellow came out, he was 13th. However, as he began settling into the race, the car became looser and Saavedra started losing the positions he had gained and eventually went a lap down. Luck came his way though on the fourth pit stop, lap 120, as he was already committed to coming in when the yellow was again shown, He therefore managed to get his lap back and was sitting in 14th at the restart. Saavedra gained another spot and remained there until the next stop 48 laps later. However, as he left his pit box following the stop he hit the outside rear tire set out for Will Power and received a drive through penalty. He re-joined the race in 17th, where he remained until the checkered flag.



Commenting on the race, Saavedra said, "It was quite a long race out there, but I'm so proud of the whole Automatic Fire Sprinklers, Inc - KV AFS Racing guys. It's been a long weekend for us as we never had a strong car but we never gave up the fight. We should of had a top-10 finish, but I made a mistake hitting the outside rear tire in Will Power's pit box and received a drive through penalty very late in the race, which cost me some places. Overall it wasn't the position we wanted but hopefully we will learn from here and apply it to Houston in a couple of weeks time."


The 24-year-old made his fourth start tonight on the 1.455-mile high-banked TMS oval.  In three previous races he has a best finish of 14th from last year and a best start of 11th in Race 1 in 2011.  Saavedra picked up 13 points today, which puts him 21st in the standings with 138 points, just 25 points away from 15th. 


Born in Bogotá, Colombia, Saavedra has been among the youngest drivers in nearly every series he has competed in. He joined the Firestone Indy Lights just before his 19th birthday and that year was awarded Rookie of the Year Honors with AFS Racing/Andretti Autosport. He moved to Bryan Herta Autosport for 2010 where he made his Indianapolis 500 debut becoming the third Colombian driver to do so. Saavedra then stepped up to the IndyCar Series in 2011 with Conquest Racing before returning to Indy Lights in 2012. Last year he spent the entire season back in IndyCar with Dragon Racing.


After six consecutive race weekends, the KV AFS team will have a week back in Indianapolis before the Open Test at Pocono Raceway, June 19. They will then head to Houston, June 27-29 for the Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston presented by the Greater Houston Honda Dealers. Both races will be broadcast live on NBCSports at 3 p.m. (ET) on June 28th and 29th. IMS Radio Network broadcast is complemented by real-time Timing & Scoring on and the INDYCAR 14 app. The race broadcast also will be on IMS Radio Network affiliates, XM 209 and Sirius 213.



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