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Hildebrand, Saavedra back on top in Lights.


It's a situation benefiting both. Two competitors have the open-wheel experience and guiding words of Michael Andretti and Gary Peterson at their disposal, while AFS Racing/Andretti Green Racing receives their talents in the top development series in North American open-wheel racing.

"Mike Andretti and I spend a lot of time talking to them before and after the races, trying to give them the 'what to do and what not to do' advice when they get in the car," said AFS owner and former competitor Peterson, "They're young."

Indeed so, for JR Hildebrand is 21, and Sebastian Saavedra 19, but they're also 1-2 again in the Firestone Indy Lights standings after nine races, although Hildebrand, who has two victories and six podium finishes overall, leads by 51 points heading to the 25 July race in Edmonton.

"We have great drivers," Peterson continued, "but it's tough having two drivers so competitive on a team. Both of them want to win and both of them want to win the championship."

Saavedra picked up his second victory of the season on the Toronto street course at the weekend, and the 53 points - including three bonuses for winning the pole and leading the most laps - pushed him from fourth to second overall, and helped recover from the 18-point penalty he incurred a week earlier at Watkins Glen International.

Hildebrand, who started fourth, won that race in the #26 ARPRO car but, in Toronto, could only watch as his team-mate overtook him in turn one on lap 18 as he struggled with an ill-handling car over the remaining 32 laps. It was the first time that they had finished 1-2 this season.

"I was just trying to push him as hard as I could, waiting for the mistake, but it never came," Saavedra said of the laps leading up to his pass for the lead, "I realised it was just going to have to be by myself, so I measured as best as I could, trying to not lose any gap from him. Exiting turn eleven, I was already in his tow and, as soon as I saw the braking point, I didn't doubt it. I just went for it."



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
AFS/AGR team-mates JR Hildebrand and Sebastian Saavedra battle in Toronto   [pic credit: IRL/Haines]
Btyan Clauson tribute at Pocono   [pic credit: Indycar Media/Chris Owens]
Justin Wilson tribute at Pocono   [pic credit: Indycar media/Chris Owens]
Mikhail Aleshin - Schmidt Peterson Motorsports   [pic credit: Indycar Media/Chris Owens]
Mikhail Aleshin - Schmidt Peterson Motorsports   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Chris Owens]
Mikhail Aleshin - Schmidt Peterson Motorsports   [pic credit: Indycar Media/Chris Jones]
Firestone tyres during Indianapolis test   [pic credit: Indycar media/Chris Owens]
Ed Jones - Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Simon Penske - Team Penske   [pic credit: IndyCar media/Bret Kelley]
Simon Pagenaud - Team Penske   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Joe Skibinski]
Scott Dixon - Target Chip Ganassi Racing   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/JOE SKIBINSKI]
Luca Filippi   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Chris Jones]
Josef Newgarden - Ed Carpenter Racing   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Shawn Gritzmacher]
Will Power - Penske  [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Chris Jones]
Will Power - Penske   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Chris Jones]
James Hinchcliffe - Schmidt Peterson Motorsports   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Chris Jones]
Josef Newgarden - Ed Carpenter Racing [credit: Chris Jones]
James Hinchcliffe - Schmidt Peterson [credit: Chris Owens]

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