The close-quarters nature of racing at Detroit’s Belle Isle Park proved very problematic for Sebastian Saavedra, who went into the Turn 5 tire barriers after contact with Marco Andretti on Lap 33 of today’s first Chevrolet Indy Dual in Detroit race.
Shortly after the race went under a full-course yellow, Saavedra was found standing in the cockpit of the No. 6 Dragon Racing Chevrolet when he apparently spotted Andretti going by. Television cameras then caught the Colombian driver throwing his arms up and delivering two emphatic middle fingers, presumably toward the third-generation racer.
INDYCAR Race Control reviewed the contact between Saavedra and Andretti but chose to take no action.
“It’s just frustrating to see that Marco keeps doing these dirty moves and as usual, nothing is done to him,” said Saavedra shortly afterwards. “It’s just a very frustrating day. We were very strong. We were up there. Great strategy from the guys. The car was perfect. And he just punched me out. It’s just a very unfortunate situation for the [team].”
Andretti wasn’t having a great day at the time of his run-in with Saavedra, and it didn’t get much better after it, either. He had more contact, this time with Charlie Kimball, on Lap 47 and needed to pit for repairs on his left front tow link and front nose cone. That cost him three laps and he wound up 20th at the finish, causing him to fall out of the IZOD IndyCar Series championship lead.
Fortunately, Andretti and Saavedra have appeared to bury the hatchet on Twitter as of this evening.
Andretti: “Wasn’t our day. Bent toe link so was holding on.Sorry to @sebsaavedra , I tried to back out but was already committed.Will be back tomorrow!”
Saavedra: “@MarcoAndretti apology accepted. Not the best corner for that pass bro. We good.”