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Archive for July, 2011

Bad Luck Ruins Simona’s Top Ten Run at Edmonton

July 27, 2011 Leave a comment

July 24, 2011 – Edmonton, Alberta, Canada – Simona De Silvestro was on her way to her fourth top-ten finish of the season when a mechanical problem stopped her on lap 55 of Sunday afternoon’s Edmonton Indy.

De Silvestro and her Nuclear Clean Air Energy crew had a rough start to the Edmonton Indy race weekend. IndyCar track activity was cancelled on Friday, after a continuous rain fell over the Edmonton City Centre Airport circuit.

Saturday’s schedule was rearranged to include additional track time, however De Silvestro and her team spent both sessions trying to find enough speed. That afternoon, the team made good progress and De Silvestro delivered a solid qualifying attempt, running in the top six for most of the session. The time fell just short with only a couple minutes left, leaving her to start P16 in Sunday’s race.

After several incidents during the early laps of the Edmonton Indy, De Silvestro was running P18. She continued to move up through the field and, after a great pit stop on lap 38, was running P12. A drive-through penalty for Hunter-Reay moved her up to P11. Eleven laps later, she came out of the team’s second pit stop in P10. Unfortunately, the car suffered a suspected clutch failure, bringing HVM’s day to an end on lap 55.

“It’s definitely disappointing,” said De Silvestro. “The team worked so hard this weekend to improve the Nuclear Clean Air Energy car every time we went out on track. After our top-ten finish in Toronto, I thought we were headed toward a repeat, but that just wasn’t our luck today. So we’ll hope to do it in Mid-Ohio.”

In two weeks, the IZOD IndyCar Series heads to the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, OH. The Honda Indy 200, airing on Versus, will take place on Sunday, August 7 at 2 p.m. EDT.

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Simona Finds Speed for Edmonton Indy Qualifying

July 27, 2011 Leave a comment

July 23, 2011 – Edmonton, Alberta, Canada – Simona de Silvestro and her HVM Racing team had a rough start to the Edmonton Indy race weekend. However, on Saturday afternoon, De Silvestro showed that she wouldn’t be deterred, hitting the track with a notable qualifying effort.

The Nuclear Clean Air Energy crew, along with the other teams in the IZOD IndyCar Series paddock, was ready to go for the first practice on Friday morning. Unfortunately, Mother Nature had other plans. A continuous, and sometimes intense, rain fell all day on the Edmonton City Centre Airport circuit, cancelling all track activity for the day. HVM Racing had the added challenge of being near the main drain in the paddock. As the downpours continued, the rainwater flowed downhill and pooled in the center of the covered setup area. The team was able to manage the situation, which cleared up by Saturday’s scheduled track time.

An additional practice session was added on Saturday morning to make up for lost time on Friday. De Silvestro and her team struggled in both sessions, aiming to make the proper adjustments in time for the afternoon qualifying session.

De Silvestro made a solid qualifying attempt, running in the top six for most of the session. The time fell just short with only a couple minutes left, leaving her to start P16 in Sunday’s race.

“It’s tough when you struggle in practice,” said De Silvestro. “We had some trouble this morning, but the Nuclear team has made some improvements since them. I think we were better on reds and it felt like the car just came alive much more in this session. We have to improve even more for tomorrow, though. The race is going to be a challenge, but I really like the track and I’m having a lot of fun out there.”

The Edmonton Indy will take place Sunday, July 24 at the Edmonton City Centre Airport and airing on Versus. Pre-race activities will begin at noon with the 90-lap race starting at 12:45 p.m. MDT.

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Simona Earns a Top-Ten Finish on the Streets of Toronto

July 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Toronto, Ontario – July 10, 2011 – After 85 laps of chaos during the Honda Indy Toronto on Sunday afternoon, Simona De Silvestro crossed the finish line with a tenth-place finish and a sense of accomplishment.

Not only did the result mark her third top-ten finish of the 2011 season, it also accomplished the comeback she was hoping for after a month and a half of unfortunate luck.

De Silvestro started P17 on the temporary street circuit and quickly advanced her way forward, at one point running as high as P4. The race included numerous cautions, but De Silvestro was able to avoid incidents, save fuel and make advances.

“Overall, I think the race went really well,” she said. “It felt great to be back in the Nuclear Clean Air Energy car and I had a lot of fun out there. We’re definitely going to build on this result as we move forward. My team did an awesome job and I’m grateful to them, and my sponsors, for sticking with me over the past couple months. Now it’s time to look forward to the rest of the season.”

In two weeks, the IZOD IndyCar Series travels to Edmonton City Centre Airport in Alberta, Canada for the Edmonton Indy. The race will air on Sunday, July 24 at 2 p.m. ET on Versus TV.

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Simona Ready to Make Her Return in the Honda Indy Toronto

July 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Toronto, Ontario – July 9, 2011 – After a tough month and a half, Simona De Silvestro is back in the cockpit of the No. 78 Nuclear Clean Air Energy car for the Honda Indy Toronto this weekend.

De Silvestro and the HVM crew arrived in Toronto with a focus on putting the past behind them and aiming for the success they saw at the beginning of the 2011 season. The team made steady improvements with each practice session of the weekend, which saw the entire field separated by less than one second, leading up to Saturday afternoon’s qualifying attempt.

The run was solid, however just not enough to advance into the second round of qualifying. De Silvestro will start P17 for Sunday’s race.

“In our qualifying attempt, we gambled a little bit with the tires but it was just something to try,” she said. “There are a couple of things we have to change on the Nuclear Clean Air Energy car, but it felt pretty strong. That’s going to be a good thing for the race tomorrow. It will be about being consistent and not making mistakes. If we can do that, we’ll have a good finish.”

De Silvestro joins the rest of the IZOD IndyCar field on Sunday for the Honda Indy Toronto, an 85-lap race on the temporary street circuit in downtown Toronto. The pre-race festivities will begin on Versus TV at 2 p.m. ET.

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Simona Not Cleared to Drive at Iowa Speedway

July 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Newton, IA – June 24, 2011 – After a week of ups and downs following an accident at The Milwaukee Mile last weekend, Simona de Silvestro met with medical staff on Friday morning at Iowa Speedway and was not cleared to drive in the Iowa Corn Indy 250.

Last Saturday, de Silvestro’s car made contact with the SAFER barrier on the exit of turn four, in addition to the inside wall of the track. De Silvestro was sent to Froedert hospital, where she was later released.

What followed was a series of medical evaluations throughout the week. The following is a statement from INDYCAR regarding those check-ups:

“Upon evaluation Sunday morning at Milwaukee, Simona had no physical signs of a concussion after the neurological exam and didn’t report any post-concussion symptoms to the INDYCAR medical team so she was cleared to drive.   After taking 11 laps in the car, Simona returned to the care center reporting post-concussion symptoms.   Physical and emotional stress can bring out post-concussion symptoms.

To be cleared to drive after a concussion, a driver must pass the IMPACT Test and INDYCAR Medical evaluation.  Simona passed the IMPACT Test on Wednesday but was still exhibiting post-concussion symptoms when evaluated by INDYCAR Medical on Friday at Iowa so she has not been cleared to drive.  She will be re-evaluated at Toronto.”

For additional information regarding this statement, please contact Amy Konrath, Director of Public Relations for INDYCAR.

HVM Racing and the Nuclear Clean Air Energy team has made the decision to pack up and go back to Indianapolis, where they will prepare for the next race on the IZOD IndyCar Series schedule. The Honda Indy Toronto (airing on Versus) will take place on Sunday, July 10 at 2 p.m. ET.

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Simona Makes the Right Decision at The Milwaukee Mile

July 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Milwaukee, WI – June 19, 2011 – Only a few laps into Sunday afternoon’s Milwaukee 225 race, Simona de Silvestro decided that she wasn’t in the right condition to drive after the crash she was involved in during Saturday’s qualifying session.

On Saturday, de Silvestro’s car got loose between turns three and four and made contact with the SAFER barrier on the exit of turn four, in addition to the inside wall of the track.

De Silvestro was sent to Froedert hospital, where she was later released, and then met with medical staff on Sunday morning. She was cleared to drive and told her team she felt fine up until race time.

“Throughout the day, I thought I was ready to get out there, but it only took a lap or two to realize that I wasn’t,” said de Silvestro. “It’s tough because the Nuclear Clean Air Energy team worked so hard last night to repair the car. I’m proud of them and thankful that they were willing to put in the hard work it took to be ready when the green flag dropped. Now I’m just going to focus on getting ready for the next race.”

Next weekend, the IZOD IndyCar Series heads to Iowa Speedway for the Iowa Corn Indy 250, airing on VERSUS at 8 p.m. ET.

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Lady Luck Not on Simona’s Side at the Legendary Milwaukee Mile

July 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Milwaukee, WI – June 19, 2011 – Simona de Silvestro’s qualifying run ended early on Saturday afternoon at The Milwaukee Mile as she got loose between turns three and four. The car made contact with the SAFER barrier on the exit of turn four and then came to rest against the inside wall.

De Silvestro was taken to the infield medical care center at the track, where Dr. Mike Olinger reported, “Simona is awake and alert, being transported via ground to Froedert Medical Center for further observation.”

She was released from Froedert at approximately 10:15 p.m. on Saturday. She then met with the track medical team on Sunday morning for re-evaluation, where she was cleared to drive in Sunday’s race.

Meanwhile, the Nuclear Clean Air Energy crew worked overnight and into the morning hours to repair the damage sustained to the car. They were able to make the necessary repairs to compete in the Milwaukee 225 race, taking place Sunday afternoon at 3 p.m. CST. De Silvestro will start P26.

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