Atlantics: De Silvestro takes record-breaking fifth win
By LJ Hutchins
Sunday, August 16th, 2009
Atlantic Championship points leader Simona De Silvestro has taken a step closer to the series title after a close win over the second-placed John Edwards at the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres in Quebec.
Silvestro, now the woman with the most pole positions and the most laps led in the series has also now displaced Britain’s Katherine Legge as the woman with the most wins in a single season.
She also became the first woman to win a race in any class in the 40-year history of the iconic Quebec street race.
The 20-year-old Swiss racer started from pole position then led every lap to win by 0.886 seconds over Edwards. Jonathan Summerton finished third.
De Silvestro now leads the Atlantic Championship point standings on 156 points with three of 12 races remaining. Her closest rivals are Edwards on 135 and Summerton on 127.
She said: “We had a pretty good start and then we kind of pulled away. I pushed really hard the first few laps to make a gap to both John and Summerton. It was good.
“Then, in the middle, the yellow flags were a little bit disturbing, because I couldn’t see what was really happening, so I kind of had to slow down where the cautions were. I caught them, a little bit, at the wrong moments and that’s, I think, where Edwards could close the gap to me.
“With 10 minutes to go, I was protecting my racecar because we had to finish, and we had a strong racecar. I want to thank my whole team for giving me such a great car this weekend. I thought we would be struggling a little bit on the street course, but apparently not. We managed pretty well and made a great car.
“I’m really happy. The whole Atlantic series, coming here to Three Rivers, it’s exceptional because of all the fans. It’s so much fun to be here and so many people kind of know you, so you feel like Formula 1 drivers. That’s pretty cool. I really enjoy coming here.”
Tonis Kasemets picked up his fourth top-five result in five starts with a fourth-place finish, enabling him to move back into fifth in the championship standings.
Defending series champion Markus Niemela rounded out the top five while Britain’s James Winslow was seventh for Genoa Racing.