Kiko Porto took his second USF Pro 2000 win at Circuit of the Americas, over a year after his first in the series.
DEForce Racing filled the front row in qualifying, with the debuting Mac Clark leading team-mate Porto.
Experience came to the fore at the start, with Porto taking the lead on lap one and Pabst Racing’s points leader Myles Rowe passing Velocity Racing Development’s Nikita Johnson for third.
A crash at the turn 16 hairpin, intigated by Jordan Missig making a diving move on Exclusive Autosport’s Salvador de Alba but instead collecting his own Pabst team-mate Jace Denmark, meant the next three laps were spent behind the pace car before racing resumed on lap five.
Clark had a strong restart and tried passing around the outside of turn one but could not do it, while Johnson was able to get back ahead of Rowe exiting the corner.
There was then little action, with Porto and Clark trading fastest lap a few times and eventually finishing 0.985 seconds apart. Johnson made it two debutants on the podium by gapping Rowe, while TJ Speed’s Lirim Zendeli finished fifth following a mid-race pass on Jay Howard Driver Development’s Ricardo Escotto
Most of the battling took place towards the bottom of the top 10. Francesco Pizzi passed the debuting Frankie Mossman for eight on the lap after the restart, with Michael d’Orlando going down the inside of Mossman at turn one next time by.
Mossman got back past d’Orland on lap eight, then through the remainder of the lap d’Orlando lost several poitions before heading to the pits to retire. De Alba was next to pass Mossman, then gained another place to eighth when Pizzi retired on the last lap.
Race result (15 laps)
|1||Kiko Porto||DEForce Racing||34m54.672s|
|2||Mac Clark||DEForce Racing||+0.985s|
|3||Nikita Johnosn||Velocity Racing Development||+4.009s|
|4||Myles Rowe||Pabst Racing||+6.030s|
|5||Lirim Zendeli||TJ Speed||+9.172s|
|7||Jack William Miller||Miller Vinatieri Motorsports||+15.875s|
|8||Salvador de Alba||DEForce Racing||+21.383s|
|10||Jonathan Browne||Turn 3 Motorsport||+23.320s|
|11||Jorge Garciarce||DEForce Racing||+23.671s|
|12||Louka St.-Jean||Turn 3 Motorsport||+40.576s|
|13||Avery Towns||Exclusive Autosport||+40.799s|
|14||Lindsay Brewer||Exclusive Autosport||+42.873s|
|15||Nicholas Monteiro||NeoTech Motorsport||+43.401s|
|NC||Francesco Pizzi||TJ Speed||+1 lap|
|Ret||Michael d’Orlando||Turn 3 Motorsport|
|Ret||Jace Denmark||Pabst Racing|
|Ret||Jordan Missig||Pabst Racing|
|Fastest lap: Clark, 2m03.770s