Limited Track Time Puts Saavedra 19th

Submitted by on Monday, 07 July 2014 15:53

Limited Track Time Puts Saavedra 19th

By Kevin Diamond


LAKE POND, PA - July 5, 2014 - KV AFS Racing's Sebastian Saavedra will start 19th for tomorrow's Pocono INDYCAR 500 at Pocono Raceway in Lake Pond, PA.


The objective of the first session this morning was to run 55 laps in order to complete the necessary mileage for a Chevrolet engine change. With this completed, Saavedra was now able to spend the final session focusing on setting up his No. 17 Automatic Fire Sprinklers, Inc. - KV AFS Racing Chevrolet/Dallara/Firestone machine for the race before making a qualifying run simulation at the end. 


Out of 22 cars, Saavedra was set to go out 19th for qualifying, however rookie Jack Hawksworth crashed in the second practice session and was unable to make his attempt. Going out 18th, Saavedra put together a two-lap average of 218.502 mph, which puts him 19th on tomorrow's grid and next to his teammate Sebastien Bourdais.


"Of course we wanted to be a little more up front, but not being able to test at ovals as much as we want, is showing and starting to hurt us," said Saavedra after his qualifying run. "Our main focus this morning was to just mileage out the car, which we managed. My Automatic Fire Sprinkler guys were then super impressive to change my Chevrolet engine in two hours! In qualifying, I bottomed very hard in turn one on my first green lap and that killed everything because I had to lift and that lost me speed. My second lap was much quicker but by then I had lost the momentum. On a positive note though I think we have a good race car so we will just have to see how the race plays out tomorrow."


The 24-year-old Colombian, who is still relatively new to oval racing having spent his early career on road/street courses, will be looking to secure his first oval career top-10 finish (best finish his 13th at Milwaukee last year) tomorrow. The "Tricky Triangle" as Pocono is often called, will be just his 19th oval event in 48 Verizon IndyCar career starts.


The Pocono INDYCAR 500 will be broadcast live on NBCSports at 12:00 p.m. (ET) and IMS IndyCar Radio can be heard on Sirius 213 and XM 209, check local listings for your local station, or listen at or on the Verizon Indy2014 app.


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