Englishman Jack Hawksworth, fresh off a win from the pole in Race 2 of the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear season opener at the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, won his second race in a row in today's Star Mazda Race 1.
Driving the No. 82 Team Pelfrey / TORGOEN Swiss Watches / EXA Networks Mazda, Hawksworth crossed the finish line 6.9 second ahead of second-place finisher Sage Karam in the #. 88 Andretti Autosport / Comfort Revolution Mazda. This was his first podium of the season after winning two races last year, but getting off to a rocky start with mechanical problems in Round 1 at St. Pete.
Rounding out the top-three was European F3 and GP3 racer Gabby Chaves (far right), who also scored a podium finish in St. Pete. The top-finishing Expert Series driver was top AMA SuperBike racer Larry Pegram, who periodically trades two-wheels for four when he races his #72 AIM Autosport Foremost Insurance / Tampa Bay Jaw Surgery Mazda.
"The team and I are just over the moon about our results so far, but you can't reasonably after expect this kind of thing to continue, so you just have to make the best of it and keep working as hard as you can," Hawksworth said. "The minute you start taking the results for granted, they'll stop happening. Fortunately Team Pelfrey is a very professional organization, and even though the level of competition in this series is actually quite high, I'm confident that I have a winning car every time I roll out on track."
A second 30-minute race, with Hawksworth again having claimed the PEAK Performance Pole Award, will run immediately after the conclusion of the IZOD IndyCar Series Honda Grand Prix of Alabama at 4 p.m. C.T. The race was originally scheduled for Friday, but major storms in the area forced a postponement.
Rounding out the top-five was Martin Scuncio, who finished 4th in the #22 Juncos Racing / Pullman Bus Mazda after starting on the outside of the front row. Connor De Phillippi, winner from the pole in Round 1 at St. Petersburg last weekend in the #2 Juncos Racing/ModSpace Racing/One24 Mazda, qualified fourth and finished fifth. The lone female driver in the series, Ashley Freiberg, finished just outside the top-10, crossing the line 11th in her #91 JDC Motorsports / TrueCar Mazda.
Figuring in the results of two weekends and three races so far, Hawksworth has the championship points lead with 88, followed by Connor De Phillippi (64), Gabby Chaves (63), Juan Piedrahita (57) and Petri Suvanto (54).
With grid positions for Race 2 set by each car's quick time in Race 1, the front row for Race 2 will be Hawksworth on the pole with Scuncio alongside. Row 2 will be Petri Suvanto and Connor De Phillippi, with Row 3 featuring Sage Karam and Gabby Chaves. Row 4 matches Zack Meyer and Gustavo Menezes, while Row 5 has Stefan Rzadzinski and Juan Piedrahita lining up side-by-side. For a full grid sheet, click here.
Star Mazda races will be broadcast on Velocity TV and ESPN International; for air dates and times, go to www.StarMazda.com and click the Star Mazda TV icon.