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Night Before the 500: De Phillippi wins Star Mazda race

by Ryan Stringfield
Posted May 30, 2011 at 11:18 am Star Mazda

Connor De Phillippi celebrates his second Star Mazda win of the 2011 season at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis during the ‘Night Before the 500’ on Saturday.
(Photo: Star Mazda Championship)

After qualifying on pole position for Saturday’s ‘Night Before the 500’ Star Mazda race at Lucas Oil Raceway, Connor De Phillippi was worried he wouldn’t be able to race.

Rain showers pushed the Round 3 start back two hours and created serious doubt about whether or not the event would be run at all — at least on Saturday night.

After the precipitation subsided and the track was dried, the USF2000 National Championship drivers took to the 0.686-mile Indianapolis bullring and put on a memorable show for the large crowd on hand. Next up, Star Mazda.

De Phillippi started from pole with Team Pelfrey teammate Nick Andries alongside. Holding the lead into Turn 1, De Phillippi focused on hitting his marks, which is exactly what he did. The 18-year-old led from flag-to-flag edging Andries by 2.44 seconds during the 85-lap green flag event.

The victory was De Phillippi’s second of the season as the California native won the season-opening event on the Streets of St. Petersburg. His first career Star Mazda win came during the Series’ 2010 season finale at Road Atlanta.

While the track remained green throughout Saturday’s event, De Phillippi and the top-six were forced to weave their way through lap traffic under the watchful eyes of onlookers.

Ultimately Andries would finish runner-up to his teammate, despite setting the fastest lap of theĀ  race in 20.51 seconds. Rookie driver and 2010 USF2000 National Champion Sage Karam drove to his first-career Star Mazda podium finishing third.

Frenchman Tristan Vautier — who currently hold the championship lead — finished fourth overall with J.V. Horto rounding out the top-five. Martin Scuncio was the final driver to finish on the lead lap, securing sixth overall at the checkered flag.

Drivers return to action for Round 4 on Sunday June 19 at the Milwaukee Mile.

Complete results after the jump:

Star Mazda Championship
Night Before the 500 – Lucas Oil Raceway
Round 3 Complete Results

  1. Connor De Phillippi
  2. Nick Andries
  3. Sage Karam
  4. Tristan Vautier
  5. J.V. Horto
  6. Martin Scuncio
  7. Gustavo Menezes
  8. Nick Mancuso
  9. Tatiana Calderon
  10. Jerimy Daniel
  11. Patrick McKenna
  12. J.W. Roberts
  13. Carlos Linares
  14. Joao Jardim


  1. intocable on May 31, 2011 7:51 am

    The Pelfrey cars are untouchable.This season is over!

  2. Doug on June 6, 2011 8:02 pm

    I knew that Team Pelfrey would be far better than most rookie teams, but wow. They just dominated at IRP. ..er.. ORP. …er… LORI.

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