St. Petersburg Saturday IndyCar, MRTI, PWC results

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – There are seven total races (four Mazda Road to Indy presented by Cooper Tires, two Pirelli World Challenge and one Stadium Super Trucks) today, plus two other qualifying sessions, and Verizon IndyCar Series third practice and qualifying.

Here’s Friday’s notebook and results.

Quick results and notes from the sessions that have occurred, by series, are below. We’ll update this post as the day goes on.

Verizon IndyCar Series

Mazda Road to Indy presented by Cooper Tires

RESULTS

Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires

  • It was a banner qualifying session this morning for Andretti Autosport, ahead of race two. Colton Herta in the No. 98 Andretti-Steinbrenner Racing delivered the team its first pole since the introduction of the Dallara IL-15 Mazda and at 16 years old, he is the youngest polesitter in series history. The younger Herta turns 17 later this month. In third and sixth, Dalton Kellett has his best start yet in Indy Lights while Nico Jamin is sixth. Santiago Urrutia starts second with Pato O’Ward and Kyle Kaiser completing the top five.
  • In the race, Aaron Telitz dominated from pole position to win in the No. 9 Belardi Auto Racing entry. Telitz, who also won his first Pro Mazda race in race two at St. Petersburg last year, took the checkered flag by 11.033 seconds over Colton Herta and Neil Alberico, who joined Telitz as Indy Lights first-time podium finishers, with Telitz and Herta doing so on their respective series debuts. Although Telitz had a huge margin of victory, the battle for second on back behind him was excellent and saw all five active Indy Lights teams in the top six. Belardi won over the Andretti-Steinbrenner entry for Herta, Carlin’s for Alberico, Belardi’s for Shelby Blackstock, Team Pelfrey’s for Pato O’Ward and Juncos Racing’s for Kyle Kaiser. Herta was a passing demon, having made several successful moves at the inside of Turn 1 for position, and surviving a near bit of contact with Alberico when trying to get around another Californian. Santiago Urrutia retreated to the pits on lap one in his first race for Belardi with damage in a first-corner mess, while Matheus Leist was slowed by an apparent loss of power in his debut for Carlin and Juan Piedrahita saw a career-best qualifying run of third go for naught with front wing damage at Pelfrey.

Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires

  • Anthony Martin took his second pole of the weekend in as many opportunities in his debut weekend in the series with Cape Motorsports, again ahead of Victor Franzoni for Juncos Racing.
  • The same two drivers went 1-2 in the race itself, Martin led from Franzoni the entirety of the race en route to a debut race victory. TJ Fischer of Team Pelfrey scored his first podium of his career in third. Martin was over the moon with the victory, Franzoni equally effusive with happiness because of his late arrival into the series, and Fischer pleased to break through for his first podium. Outside of Nikita Lastochkin passing Phillippe Denes for fifth, the top eight drivers finished as they started in the same order.

Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda

  • Robert Megennis executed a brilliant defense of the lead in his No. 80 Team Pelfrey entry to win in the debut of the new Tatuus USF-17 Mazda, which seemed to race pretty well in the first of two races. The 17-year-old series sophomore started from pole and led flag-to-flag in the 24-lap, caution-free race. He defended against series debutantes Oliver Askew, the Team USA Scholarship winner for Cape Motorsports, and Rinus Van Kalmthout, the talented Dutch driver who’d been set with Benik and Carlin before their separation, tested with Newman/Wachs Racing before signing with Pabst Racing. Askew and Van Kalmthout have a bunch of karting experience.
  • In the afternoon race, polesitter Parker Thompson ran wide on a restart at Turn 1 which opened the door for Askew to get through. The 20-year-old native of Jupiter, Fla. ran consistently from there en route to his first career victory, perhaps the first of many in his Mazda Road to Indy career. Van Kalmthout was second with Thompson making a late dispatch of Kaylen Frederick for third, to get on the podium for Exclusive Autosport. Megennis, the race one winner, crashed out late in the race and fell to 19th.

Pirelli World Challenge

RESULTS

  • Alvaro Parente, the defending series champion, has claimed overall victory in the kickoff to the new PWC GT/GTA/GT Cup season. The GT race was marred by a long caution that took more than 20 minutes in the 50-minute race for one of the two GT Cup entries, a Ferrari Challenge entry driven by Marko Radisic. But once the caution was over, there was a spirited battle behind Parente after he’d got to the lead by Turn 4 of the second lap, past polesitter Daniel Mancinelli. Mancinelli then led Pierre Kaffer, James Davison, Johnny O’Connell and Patrick Long before Long and O’Connell engaged in an epic scrap. Davison got by Kaffer for third late, with Long following in behind but unfortunately cutting Kaffer’s tire and knocking the Magnus Racing driver from a potential podium. On the final lap, Davison and Long both got past Mancinelli for podium spots at Turn 4, and Mancinelli’s baptism by fire ended against the Turn 8 wall, leaving him 14th. Last year’s GT Cup champion Alec Udell won his GTA debut while Preston Calvert, the sole remaining GT Cup driver, won that class by default.
  • The second GTS race of the weekend saw the same 1-2 as on Friday, with Andrew Aquilante in his Phoenix Performance Ford Mustang Boss 302 ahead of Lawson Aschenbach in the Blackdog Speed Shop Chevrolet Camaro GT4. Parker Chase ended third in his Ginetta G55 for his first podium of the weekend.

Chase Sexton wins Triple Crown Anaheim 2 Supercross: Levi Kitchen unseats Jett Lawrence in 250s

Supercross Anaheim 2
Feld Motor Sports/MX Sports Pro Racing/Align Media
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Chase Sexton won two of the three races in the Monster Energy Supercross Anaheim 2 Triple Crown, which was enough to overcome a fifth-place finish in Race 2 and give him the overall victory. It was the second Supercross win of his career.

“Super big night for me,” Sexton told NBC Sports’ Will Christien. “After last weekend with that being a struggle, I just need to come out here and stop the bleeding a little bit and I did that tonight.”

Sexton suffered a crash on Lap 1 of his heat, sending him into Last Chance Qualifier. The bad gate pick put him in a difficult position to start the race and he was able to climb to only fifth at the checkers.

At Anaheim 2, three riders entered the final race of the Triple Crown in a winner-take-all scenario. Sexton, Jason Anderson and Eli Tomac each had a shot at victory. It raised the intensity level for all riders in an evening that featured a lot of comers and goers.

Jason Anderson took the early lead in Race 3, which set him up for the overall victory. Sexton stalked and passed him midway through the race and then a minor mistake late allowed Webb to slip around as well. Anderson’s 5-1-3 gave him second overall.

“I had a tough couple of rounds, getting off that Anaheim 1 crash and then last week weekend I fumbled a little bit, but I’m excited to get back on the box and start moving forward,” Anderson told Jason Thomas.

Anderson finished seventh in the first two rounds of 2023.

RESULTS: How they finished for the 450 Main in Anaheim 2

Ken Roczen was the model of consistency in the opening rounds and at Anaheim 2. In three races so far this year, he’s gotten progressively better each time with a fifth in A1, a fourth last week in San Deigo and a third this week.

With results of 2-3-4, he earned his first podium of the season, which lands him fourth in the standings.

“This was hard earned,” Roczen said after the race. “I completely botched the start and then to have to work my way up. I only happen on the very last lap to step up here on the podium.”

Webb’s solid second-place finish in the third race allowed him to leapfrog several riders and finish fourth overall, but a seventh in Race 1 kept him off the podium. He improved in each race in Anaheim, however, with a 7-4-2.

With a 4-6-5, Dylan Ferrandis rounded out the top five.

The intensity of the race was a little too much for Tomac.

While battling side-by-side with Webb in Race 3 at the one-third mark, Tomac jumped wide and crashed hard. He fell to 14th, doing some damage to his bike in the process. He advanced only one position in that race to 13th. His first two races, a third and second, were strong enough to give him sixth overall. He retains the points lead, but it has shrunk to a gap of only four over Sexton and Webb.

Malcolm Stewart injured late in the week and was not able to mount.


Levi Kitchen became the first rider to unseat Jett Lawrence in the Triple Crown format at Anaheim 2 and won the overall with consistency. In his three races, Kitchen finished 4-2-2 to narrowly edge the winner of the first two races.

“This whole day; this is unbelievable. I took a few good slams in practice and I was down on myself,” Kitchen told NBC Sports Jason Thomas afterward. “The first moto I got a good start and got shuffled back, then I knew I just needed to be consistent.”

Jett Lawrence saved his best for last – which wasn’t hard given the struggles he experienced in the first two races.

Despite those problems, he entered Race 3 of the Triple Crown three points behind Kitchen after suffering a pair of disappointing races by his personal measuring stick. In the first and second 250 races of the night, Lawrence hit the ground. He dropped to the final rider in the running order in Race 2 with a Lap 1 fall. But in both races, he was able to overcome his mistake and close the gap so that he had a chance to take his first Triple Crown win of his career.

Click here for full 250 West Main Results

Lawrence rode to third in Race 1 and sixth in Race 2. In the final race of the night, Lawrence did all he could. He earned the holeshot, but when Kitchen fell in behind him, Lawrence’s fate was sealed. His 3-6-1 tied him in points with Stilez Robertson, but the tiebreaker goes to the final round and his win secured second-place.

“I can definitely say Triple Crowns are not my thing,” Lawrence told NBC Sports Will Christien. “We have one more to try and fix this, so hopefully we can get that done.”

Lawrence will move into the 450 class for the Lucas Oil Motocross outdoor season and his 250 record book will be closed.

The best news for Lawrence is the other riders who entered this round in the top three had a worse night, so Lawrence leaves Anaheim with a 16-point gap on Cameron McAdoo and 17 over RJ Hampshire.

Roberston finished 6-1-3 to take the final step of the podium.

“Getting that win in the second Main meant a lot,” Roberston told Thomas. “I wish I could have done a little better in the third one, but we’re still up here on the box.”

Mitchell Oldenburg used consistency to earn fourth in the overall. He finished 5-4-6.

After missing the Main last week in San Diego, Max Vohland finished 7-8-4 to round out the top five.

RJ Hampshire set himself up as the early favorite with his Race 1 win. In Race 2, it all fell apart. He fell in the sand section and damaged his bike, finishing last in that race. The final event of the night for the 250s provided only a 13th-place finish, leaving Hampshire deep in the points.

Cameron McAdoo hard crash in qualification, which was scary news for a team that has seen three of their riders sidelined with injury. McAdoo was never quite able to get his rhythm with an 8-7-5.

2023 Race Recaps

San Diego: Eli Tomac, Jett Lawrence double down
Anaheim 1: Tomac wins opener for the first time

Anaheim 2 coverage

Power Rankings Week 2
SuperMotocross tightens playoff schedule
Eli Tomac, Jett Lawrence go two-for-two in San Diego
Results and points after San Diego
Seth Hammaker to miss 250 E season opener with wrist injury
Jo Shimoda joins Seth Hammaker, Austin Forkner with injury
Injury sidelines Austin Forkner for remainder of 2023 SX