Pigot Takes the Win in Exciting USF2000 Season Finale at Baltimore
 September 4, 2011| 
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Forgeois Claims National Class Championship Title

 

Andretti Autosport’s Spencer Pigot held off charging series champion Petri Suvanto in a last-lap shootout on the streets of Baltimore, Md., this morning to claim his third win of the season. Pigot, who started on pole in the #8 Team MAZDASPEED/Skip Barber entry, maintained his advantage at the start and fought off challenges from, firstly, yesterday’s race winner, Wayne Boyd, and then Suvanto to take the checkered flag just .314s ahead of the Finn.

 

Boyd, 20, from Belfast, Northern Ireland, vaulted from fourth to second at the start, followed by the youngest driver in the field, 15-year-old Luigi Biangardi, from Chicago, Ill. Suvanto, who started second, fell briefly to fifth place before sneaking past Zach Veach toward the end of the first lap. The caution flags then waved for the first time after local driver Bruce Hamilton, from Monkton, Md., found the wall in Turn Four.

 

Suvanto passed Biangardi soon after the restart, and next time around made a move on Boyd’s #4 TheAppBuilder.com/Belardi Auto Racing Van Diemen-Mazda for second place on the run toward Turn One. The unfortunate Boyd soon fell out of the picture with mechanical problems, leaving Suvanto to close in on Pigot for the lead.

 

Another full-course caution set up a green/white, checkered finish, and while Pigot was able to cement his impressive run by securing the victory, all eyes were on the battle for third between Biangardi’s #9 INJECT-IT.com/Gulfstream Properties/Belardi Auto Racing entry and the #33 Res Precast/MDL Racing Van Diemen of Matthew Di Leo.

 

Di Leo made his move into Turn Nine, but Biangardi fought back. The pair went side-by-side through the chicane at Turn 10 and 11 only to collide and end their races in Turn 12.

 

Roman Lagudi driving the #10 High Performance Distributors car for JDC MotorSports, took full advantage to secure his first podium finish of the season.

 

Joe Colasacco of Auriana Racing maintained his 100 percent record in the National Class with his victory today. He also finished a fine fourth overall. Luca Forgeois in the #5 Café Noir entry for Pabst Racing Services finished fifth overall and second in class.

 

The 16-year-old talent from New York City has claimed six wins and 10 podium finishes from 12 races this season to secure the National Class championship. He will be rewarded with a new, race-ready Mazda MZR 2.0 engine and a conversion kit to advance to the Championship Class next year.

 

Contingency awards included the Tilton Hard Charger Award for the driver who gains the most
positions which went to Timmy Megenbier of Sick Tea Racing. The PFC Award for the winning car owners was issued to Andretti Autosport and Auriana Racing in the National class. The Staubli Award, a random finisher award, was issued to Luigi Biangardi of Belardi Auto Racing.

 

Spencer Pigot, #8 Team MAZDASPEED/Skip Barber:  “It was great to come back today after the disappointment yesterday. I was able to get a bit of a lead and then there were a couple of safety car periods that ruined the momentum and flow of the race. We had a one-lap shootout again and I made a good restart and was able to hold Petri off the last few corners. It is great to be back on the top step.”

 

Petri Suvanto, #3 Viseko:  “Today was obviously a bit of a different race. Yesterday, I knew we had to bring the car home safely in the top three and try to beat Spencer. Now that I had clinched the championship, today I could concentrate on taking a bit more risks and attacking a bit more. It really paid off today. I dropped back to fifth, and working my way back to second was so much fun. I had a big smile on my face. The last-lap battle after the restart was great with Spencer but today he deserved the victory.”

 

Roman Lagudi, #10 High Performance Distributors:  “It was a funny race. My team was telling me to be consistent throughout the race and that’s what I did. I was lucky in getting a few spots. There was an incident with two cars in the last corner and I capitalized and pulled off third. I am excited. Going into the last corner in fifth and exiting third, I can’t explain that feeling. I am on the top of the world right now.”

 

Joe Colasacco, #11 Auriana Racing:  “It was a great race for me and turned out to be a battle against myself in the end because I wanted to run the laps that I knew I could run and stay out of trouble. Unfortunately, the pace cars got us bunched up and I was a little worried about the restart. But, it is just a great feeling to be here with all the IndyCars, so many fans and some great young drivers. This is a great series and, all and all, a great weekend for us.”

 

Luca Forgeois, #5 Café Noir: “It was definitely a very exciting and insightful year. It was my first time in a car and I learned so much. There is nothing negative I can say about my speed or anything; it is just a learning process. I had never been in a car before so I think I will be a lot stronger next year. I couldn’t have done it without [series promoter] Dan Andersen, Mazda, Cooper Tires and the Mazda Road to Indy. It is great what they are doing. This means I can move up next year now that I won the engine so I am very excited. I know I will be much stronger. I know how to tune the car and I know the tracks. I know the difference between a car and a go-kart now and that was the biggest thing I actually learned this year. I look forward to a very strong year next year and it wouldn’t be possible without the Mazda Road to Indy.”

 

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