LEXINGTON, OH - Saturday, August 3, 2013 - KV Racing Technology driver Simona De Silvestro qualified ninth for tomorrow's Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio on the scenic 2.258-mile, 13-turn Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. Teammate Tony Kanaan will start 20th.
De Silvestro had a solid qualifying session in the No. 78 Nuclear Clean Air Energy - KV Racing Technology entry. She went out in Group One in Round One and posted a lap of 65.9454 seconds placing her fourth in her group of 12 drivers and thus advanced to Round Two. In the second round she responded with a fast lap of 65.9621 seconds (123.234 mph) putting her ninth on the speed charts placing her in the fifth row of the starting grid.
"P9 is definitely one of the better qualifying efforts we've had lately and I think we can be okay with that," De Silvestro said. "We made a few changes and learned from it, so that was a good thing. We've been far away from this for a long time and now it's really good to be back. We've worked really well through the weekend and just missed it by a little bit; I think it was a tenth to get into the fast six. We have a little more work, but we feel pretty confident. We have a really good pace and with where we're starting hopefully we can finish up front. A top-ten would be huge for us. We started off the season so well and then hit a little bit of a slump, so now it's really time to get it back on track and I feel that's what we're doing. My team is really good and we're working really hard and that's what counts right now."
Kanaan, behind the wheel of the No. 11 Sunoco - KV Racing Technology - SH Racing machine, went out in the second group in Round One of qualifying. His posted the 10th fastest lap in his group, 66.2537 seconds (122.692 mph), and therefore did not advance to round two.Kanaan will start on the 10th row in the 20th position in tomorrow's race.
"Obviously I am disappointed and frustrated," Kanaan said. "We worked hard to improve the car during the practice sessions and we thought we had a top-10 car, but things just didn't work out that way. We have to sit down, take a look at the data and make some changes. It is going to be a long race tomorrow. Hopefully we can improve the car and come up with a strategy that will get us back to the front."
This is De Silvestro's best qualifying position and second top-10 in three attempts at Mid-Ohio (tenth in 2010). The 24-year-old Swiss driver has qualified in the top-10 five times this season: third at St. Petersburg, eighth at Sao Paulo, and ninth at Pocono, Toronto Race 2, and today at Mid-Ohio. De Silvestro has finished in the top-10 four times this year including a season-high sixth also at St. Pete. She also has an eighth-place showing at Sao Paulo and ninth place finishes at Long Beach and Toronto Race 1.
Kanaan has now qualified in the top-10 six times in 12 attempts at Mid-Ohio with a best starting position of third in 2007. He has qualified in the top-10 seven times in 14 events this season with a best starting spot of fourth at Toronto (Race 1) and Brazil. The 38-year-old Brazilian is sixth in the championship standings with 307 points on the strength of six top-10 finishes including five top-five showings, three podiums and a victory at the 2013 Indianapolis 500.
There was a 45-minute practice session prior to qualifying. During the session Kanaan posted the ninth fastest lap with a time of 67.0794 seconds (121.182 mph). De Silvestro was 10th on the speed charts with a lap of 67.0841seconds (121.173 mph).
Tomorrow's Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio will be broadcast live on NBC starting at 2:00 p.m. ET.
About KV Racing Technology
KV Racing Technology was founded in January 2003 and joined the IndyCar Series in 2008. The Indianapolis based team is owned by successful venture capitalist Kevin Kalkhoven and 1996 CART IndyCar World Series Champion Jimmy Vasser, with Indian industrialist Imran Safiulla joining the team this season as a partner. For more information about KV Racing Technology visit: www.kvracingtechnology.com or follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/kvracing and Facebook: www.facebook.com/kvracingtechnology
About SH Racing
Founded in 2010, SH is led by Principal James "Sulli" Sullivan. In its Third year, SH expands with a full season alliance with KV Racing Technology in the IZOD IndyCar Series.
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