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Perseverance Pays Off for Wilson in Toronto 100

Open Wheel Racing Topics:  Sebastian Saavedra, Stefan Wilson, Toronto 100

Perseverance Pays Off for Wilson in Toronto 100

Andrew Herta
Bryan Herta Autosport
July 18, 2010

After falling as far as 14th in the running order, Stefan Wilson battled back to a fifth-place finish in the Firestone Indy Lights’Toronto 100 today and set fastest lap of the race. It was a rewarding drive after not being able to capitalize on a front row start in the last event at Watkins Glen due to an engine failure.

Wilson qualified 10th for the 50-lap race and lost several positions in the early stages after overshooting Turn Three in an attempt to move past the #77 car of James Winslow. He rebounded setting fastest lap of the race on Lap 17 and moving into the top eight on Lap 33. With six laps remaining, Wilson caught up to the lead pack and looked poised to challenge Charlie Kimball as time ran out. This was Wilson’s second top-five finish on the challenging street circuit.

Teammate Sebastian Saavedra, last year’s race and pole winner, endured a difficult weekend and his first DNF of the season. Saavedra qualified an impressive fifth after missing the entire second practice session with a gearbox problem, but fell victim to additional gearbox issues in the race and retired on Lap 33.

Points leader J.K. Vernay extended his lead in the championship with a flag-to-flag victory. Saavedra is now fifth in the standings, 16 points out of second and 84 shy of Vernay. Wilson remains in sixth place, only 35 points behind his teammate.

The Indy Lights Series will continue its Canadian tour next weekend with the Edmonton Indy on July 25.

Race Results
1. J.K. Vernay
2. Dan Clarke
3. Gustavo Yacaman
5. Stefan Wilson
14. Sebastian Saavedra

Stefan Wilson, #28 Dallara/Firestone: “It was a difficult weekend. We didn’t quite have the setup and the whole team was working hard the entire weekend. We struggled in qualifying but by the end of the weekend, the car was handling much, much better and it showed. It was really a hard fought race; dropping back to 14th after going into the runoff made things difficult. I was able to come back and finish fifth and it was a really enjoyable day for me. I was able to overtake a few people and I’m just really pleased with the outcome.”

Sebastian Saavedra, #29 William Rast Dallara/Firestone: “It was a tough weekend for the William Rast crew. It was a long race battling to go to the front but, unfortunately, it didn’t go the way we wanted with a gearbox problem that took us out of the race. We had a gearbox problem yesterday and lost the second practice session. That really hurt us because we wanted to test a lot of things which we were not able to and we went quite blind into the qualifying session which affected our position. It was very unfortunate but we are looking ahead to the next race to try to make it up.”

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