Junior Open Wheel Talent

News and Views on Drivers Chasing Open-Wheel Stardom

Pigot and Suvanto top competition at Road America

by Ryan Stringfield
Posted August 20, 2011 at 11:54 am U.S. F2000 National Championship

Spencer Pigot celebrates his second win of the 2011 USF2000 National Championship as he takes the checkered flag in Round 9 at Road America.
(Photo: John R. Hendrick/USF2000)

Spencer Pigot started the weekend just the way he wanted. Unfortunately, the same could not be said of his start in Round 9 of the USF2000 National Championship at Road America.

But, the race wasn’t over.

Pigot snared the pole position, besting championship-leader Petri Suvanto by 0.007 seconds on the high-speed Wisconsin road course. At the start of the race, Pigot was relegated to fourth place and it seemed his reign at the front might be over. Undeterred, Pigot focused on the draft and putting down consistent laps. By Lap 4, the 17-year-old standout was up to second, closing on the gearbox of  Suvanto.

Two laps later, Pigot made a bid for the lead passing Suvanto. With six of 12 laps completed, he began to pull away from the field. By the time the checkered flag waved, Pigot — having set the fastest lap of the race — had developed a 5.697-second advantage over second place earning his second USF2000 National Championship win.

“The race was a lot of fun, but a bit more fun than I would have liked after falling back to fourth,” Pigot said post race. “I had to fight hard to get past Zach [Veach] and was able to get back into the lead pretty quickly after that. I kept pushing and tried to pull away.”

Meanwhile, Suvanto had his hands full battling for second place with Wayne Boyd, Zach Veach and Chris Miller, who were all dicing for a spot inside the top-three. Boyd was quickly removed from the fight when race control issued a blocking penalty. Veach worked his way past Suvanto for second, but the Finn reclaimed his runner-up position on the white flag lap. Veach settled for third, while Miller ended his run in fourth. Timmy Megenbier rounded out the fast five.

Saturday’s Round 10 was cut short due to rain. Pigot, starting from pole, led the opening laps with Suvanto in second and Miller in third. By Lap 3, Boyd found his way past Suvanto. On the fourth lap precipitation dampened the race circuit creating havoc in the running order. Boyd took the point with Suvanto moving into second place, relegating Pigot to third. Miller dropped back to 10th.

With the track surface deemed overly wet, drivers were sent to the pits for rain tires. Due to time constraints, the drivers returned to the track for a one-lap dash to the checkered flag.

With the white flag waving on the restart, Suvanto and Pigot worked their way past Boyd. Megenbier found his way to fourth on the restart and Veach moved up three spots to round out the top-five. At the stripe, Suvanto led Pigot by 2.704 seconds, earning his fifth win of the 2011 season.

With the win, Suvanto (277 points) extends his championship lead to 39 points over Spencer Pigot (238). Zach Veach is third with 209.

The USF2000 National Championship drivers return to action on Sept. 4 at Baltimore.

USF2000 National Championship

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