Competing in his first season in the Firestone Indy Lights Championship,
Battistini has managed to reach Victory Lane for the third time, with all
his wins coming on oval tracks - Homestead, Indianapolis and now Iowa
Speedway. Coming into the year, Battistini had never raced on an oval
course, making his victories all the more remarkable.
After starting second and running there for most of the race, the driver of
the No. 15 AlexP racecar was able to take advantage of lap traffic and make
his move for the lead. On lap 101, as leader Arie Luyendyk Jr. got caught up
in lapped traffic, Dillon took the lead from the winless Indy Lights veteran
and never gave it back. The team's British driver was able to fend off
Luyendyk Jr. on a restart with one lap to go to win by 0.4948 of a second.
The victory is Panther's 12th in Firestone Indy Lights, and puts the team in
prime position to make a run at its second Indy Lights title. Battistini's third victory of the season propelled him to first place in the championship standings, 27 points ahead of the second place driver.
Battistini will be in action next in two weeks at Watkins Glen International competing in the Corning Twin 100's.
Dillon Battistini, No. 15 AlexP Firestone Indy Lights:
"I'm just amazed. What a race; I really enjoyed that. My car was very close
to (Arie) Luyendyk and we were very close to matching pace. We lapped a few
cars several times and we both got held up, so I realized if I dropped back
a little bit and when he got held up I might be able to carry a run on him
and it worked perfectly. There was a little bit of luck involved but I can't
thank my Panther team enough for the cars they've given me this season.
These guys are the best for a reason and we're proving it this season."