Andretti Autosport's Spencer Pigot held off charging series champion Petri Suvanto in a last-lap shootout on the streets of Baltimore, Md., this morning to claim his third win of the season. Pigot, who started on pole in the No. 8 Team MAZDASPEED/Skip Barber entry, maintained his advantage at the start and fought off challenges from, firstly, yesterday's race winner, Wayne Boyd, and then Suvanto to take the checkered flag just 0.314sec ahead of the Finn.
“It was great to come back today after the disappointment yesterday," said Pigot. "I was able to get a bit of a lead and then there were a couple of safety car periods that ruined the momentum and flow of the race. We had a one-lap shootout again and I made a good restart and was able to hold Petri off the last few corners. It is great to be back on the top step.”
“Today was obviously a bit of a different race," said Suvanto, who clinched the series title in Saturday's first race. "Yesterday, I knew we had to bring the car home safely in the top three and try to beat Spencer. Now that I had clinched the championship, today I could concentrate on taking a bit more risks and attacking a bit more. It really paid off today. I dropped back to fifth, and working my way back to second was so much fun. I had a big smile on my face. The last-lap battle after the restart was great with Spencer, but today he deserved the victory.”
Boyd, 20, from Belfast, Northern Ireland, vaulted from fourth to second at the start, followed by the youngest driver in the field, 15-year-old Luigi Biangardi, from Chicago, Ill. Suvanto, who started second, fell briefly to fifth place before sneaking past Zach Veach toward the end of the first lap. The caution flags then waved for the first time after local driver Bruce Hamilton, from Monkton, Md., found the wall in Turn 4.
Suvanto passed Biangardi soon after the restart, and next time around made a move on Boyd's No. 4 TheAppBuilder.com/Belardi Auto Racing Van Diemen-Mazda for second place on the run toward Turn 1. The unfortunate Boyd soon fell out of the picture with mechanical problems, leaving Suvanto to close in on Pigot for the lead.
Another full-course caution set up a green/white, checkered finish, and while Pigot was able to cement his impressive run by securing the victory, all eyes were on the battle for third between Biangardi's INJECT-IT.com/Gulfstream Properties/Belardi Auto Racing entry and the Res Precast/MDL Racing Van Diemen of Matthew Di Leo.
Di Leo made his move into Turn 9, but Biangardi fought back. The pair went side by side through the chicane at Turn 10 and 11 only to collide and end their races in Turn 12.
Roman Lagudi driving the High Performance Distributors car for JDC MotorSports, took full advantage to secure his first podium finish of the season. Joe Colasacco of Auriana Racing maintained his 100 percent record in the National Class with his victory today. He also finished a fine fourth overall.
Luca Forgeois, in the Café Noir entry for Pabst Racing Services, finished fifth overall and second in class. The 16-year-old talent from New York City has claimed six wins and 10 podium finishes from 12 races this season to secure the National Class championship. He will be rewarded with a new, race-ready Mazda MZR 2.0 engine and a conversion kit to advance to the Championship Class next year.