Rookie JACK HAWKSWORTH/No.82 Team Pelfrey has the pole for Saturday afternoon’s Star Mazda race, with a time of 1:21.631 It was 0.006 ahead of runnerup SAGE KARAM/No.88 Andretti Autosport at 1:21.637. This was the tenth pole of the season for young Hawksworth. Karam was the 2011 Star Mazda Rookie of the Year, and is part of Andretti Autosport’s far-reaching development/ladder series. Third fastest was Rookie PETRI SUVANTO, who is in the Star Mazda Series this year as the result of winning the 2011 USF2000 championship, which is part of the Mazda Road to Indy. Keep your eyes on these young lads.
Star Mazda has 21 entries, which includes twelve Rookies, and two drivers making their Star Mazda debut this weekend – LLOYD READ/No.16 JDC Motorsports and KYLE KAISER/No.18 World Speed Motorsports. Kaiser will start eighth, and Read will be P15.
The drivers come from seven countries: USA-7; Venezuela-4; Colombia-3; Canada-2; and one each from Chile, England and Finland.
ASHLEY FREIBERG/No.91 JDC Motorsports has backing from the TRUE Car program supporting female drivers. She starts sixteenth.
Two Rookie Venezuelan drivers run with Juncos Racing, with the help of Team Viso Venezuela. Yes, that Viso. IndyCar driver, E.J. VENEZUELA is committed to bringing along young Venezuela drivers up the Road to Indy open wheel ladder, in conjunction with the Mazda Road to Indy. They are BRUNO PALI/No.15 and DIEGO FERREIRA/No.57. Last month Pali tested an Indy Lights car at Putnam Park. Viso has been supporting Pali since his karting days.
Ferreira qualified sixth, and Pali will start thirteenth for their first race.
Viso, in his third year driving for KVRT in IndyCar, is considering starting his own team next year, and has been talking with Mexican team owner/driver, ADRIAN FERNANDEZ.