Artem Petrov trumped the field in the second Indy Pro 2000 race from Road America as the Russian used an early safety car to catch the leaders before executing a shrewd move for the lead 10 laps from the finish.
That safety car was a result of Kiwi racer Hunter McElrea clashing with series veteran parker Thompson on the front straight. The accident puts a bitter end to a disastrous debut for McElrea after a spin in the day’s opening race means he leaves the Wisconsin venue with two 15th place finishes to his name.
Courtesy of setting the fastest lap in race one, Manuel Sulaiman started the race from pole position but was relegated to second when championship leader Danial Frost got the jump off the safety car restart.
A hard-charging Petrov then scythed his way ahead of Sulaiman on the same lap before promoting himself into the lead one lap later with a move on Frost at The Carosaul on the fifth tour.
The Russian was electric and after nailing a second safety car restart was able to build a 1.7s margin at the line.
Petrov’s Junco teammate Sting Ray Robb muscled his way past Frost in the dying stages, the race one winner unable to unlock his earlier pace which saw him charge from last to victory.
Frost would hang on to his second podium finish of the afternoon after fending off a late challenge by Devlin DeFrancesco to lead his rival over the line by three-tenths.
McElrea will now turn his sights to round two of the championship staged at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Circuit on July 29-30.
|2||Sting Ray Robb||+1.7088s|
|8||Moises de la Vara||+16.5595s|