Indy Lights: Hildebrand wins Long Beach stroll

By Andy Darley

CalendarSunday, April 19th, 2009

 
 

JR Hildebrand took a comfortable win over the 45 laps of the Long Beach street circuit in California as the Indy Lights series served up a procession with very little overtaking.

The Californian had taken pole in one of the two races at St Petersburg but seen Junior Strous take victory in both. This time the Dutchman was an early casualty, cruising to a halt with flames licking from his car.

“We had a great car, which made my job easier,” Hildebrand said. “I did nick the wall on the first lap, but everything ended up okay as the car was great from beginning to end.”

Richard Philippe had qualified fourth but quickly took and retained second place, while James Hinchcliffe ended up third. Strous retains the championship lead despite his exit from the race.

Northern Ireland’s Ali Jackson was the top-placed British driver in sixth, although Stefan Wilson qualified third and hung onto fourth for most of the race until being forced to retire with mechanical problems.

The other British drivers, Jay Howard, Pippa Mann and Martin Plowman, finished in 13th, 14th and 15th places, although Plowman was holding his qualification position of sixth after the start when he was ordered to pit and made no impression on the race after that.

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