Junior Open Wheel Talent

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Gustavo Yacaman wins Indy Lights race at Belle Isle after starting sixth

by Ryan Stringfield
Posted June 2, 2012 at 2:22 pm Indy Lights

Gustavo Yacaman earned his second-career Indy Lights win on the streets of Belle Isle in Detroit. (Photo credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)

Patience is a virtue, especially in racing.

While Gustavo Yacaman is not typically known as an overly patient racer, he has shown he understands just how important the trait is. Today, during the Grand Prix of Detroit at Belle Isle Park, Yacaman patiently worked his way from sixth to first after completing a pass in turn eight on Lap 26 to overtake race leader Oliver Webb.

Once in the lead, Yacaman secured his second win in 46 starts with consistent, mistake-free laps around the 2.07-mile, 14-turn temporary street circuit. His first career Indy Lights win occurred last September in Baltimore (also a street circuit).

“Just insane,” Yacaman remarked during a post-race interview. “We had a really bad start, I think I dropped back to eighth. But I never start a race without thinking I can win it.”

Early on, Oliver Webb — who started from pole position — appeared poised for victory after developing a gap on the rest of the field. Most eyes were on Peter Dempsey, however, as the young Irishman had worked his way to third (from fifth) in the opening 10 laps. Just three laps later, Dempsey’s charge and Webb’s lead were nullified.

As the front runners began to work past the lap car driven by Rodin Younessi on Lap 13, the field suddenly stacked up and Dempsey made contact with the second-place car driven by Victor Carbone. Dempsey was sent hard into the wall destroying the rear of his car.

While he emerged from the wreck under his own power, he was taken to the medical center where a piece of debris had punctured his driver suit and leg. He was released from the medical center shortly thereafter with bruising.

The field resumed racing on Lap 20 with Yacaman and Carlos Munoz taking full advantage of the restart to move into third and fourth, respectively, bumping Tristan Vautier back to fifth. On Lap 23, Yacaman and Munoz were into second and third after passing Carbone.

For the next three laps Yacaman stalked Webb, patiently watching and waiting for the right opportunity. It came on Lap 26. Yacaman went wide to the outside and then tucked back under Webb in turn 8 for the lead. He never looked back.

Following the extended caution period, race officials announced the race would be timed. With 17 minutes remaining, Munoz challenged Webb for second and made a pass around the outside. From there the field would remain unchanged.

Grand Prix of Detroit
Indy Lights Belle Isle
Complete Results

  1. Gustavo Yacaman
  2. Carlos Munoz
  3. Oliver Webb
  4. Victor Carbone
  5. Tristan Vautier
  6. Esteban Guerrieri
  7. Sebastian Saavedra
  8. Alon Day
  9. Juan Pablo Garcia
  10. Armaan Ebrahim
  11. Peter Dempsey
  12. Rodin Younessi
  13. David Ostella

For up-to-date news and views on karting and junior formula racing follow @JOWT on Twitter or follow on Facebook.

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