Home Road to IndyIndy Pro 2000 Kyle Kirkwood launches IP2000 title challenge at Road America

Kyle Kirkwood launches IP2000 title challenge at Road America

by Elliot Wood

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Kyle Kirkwood broke his Indy Pro 2000 victory duck in style at Road America with two wins that have put him 31 points off the championship lead.

The RP Motorsport driver and reigning USF2000 champion was beaten to both poles by title rivals Parker Thompson (Abel Motorsports) and Rasmus Lindh (Juncos Racing).

Race one started with immediate drama as Freedom 90 winner Danial Frost (Exclusive Autosport) stopped on track and caused a caution period. This meant on the restart Kirkwood could use the slipstream to pass Thompson for the lead, which he held on to for the rest of the race.

Kirkwood’s team-mate Ian Rodriguez spent much of the race battling Thompson for second, and a second caution period caused by early riser Moises de la Vara (DEForce Racing) left Thompson a sitting duck once again to the slipstream.

He lost places to Rodriguez and Lindh, who had fell from second to sixth early on, and then eventually Nikita Lastochkin (Exclusive Autosport) too. Thompson battled back to third, as RP Motorsport picked up a one-two finish.

In race two, Kirkwood hounded Lindh for five laps before making his move for the lead, and then soaked up the pressure from the Swede to take his second win.

Lindh’s team-mate Sting Ray Robb was demoted from second on the grid by Kirkwood at the start, and held third early on ahead of Thompson and Frost. Another electrical failure put Frost out of the race though, and a mechanical problem for Robb left Thompson with an easy podium finish.

Rodriguez claimed fourth off the back of those retirements, with Lastochkin some distance behind in fifth.

FatBoy Racing’s Phillippe Denes was denied two sixth place finishes in a row by JDL Racing driver Jacob Loomis, who like Rodriguez was in their second weekend in the championship.

Results round-up
Race 1 (15 laps)
1 Kyle Kirkwood RP Motorsport 36m06.7770s
2 Ian Rodriguez RP Motorsport +4.7096s
3 Parker Thompson Abel Motorsports +5.2599s
4 Rasmus Lindh Juncos Racing +5.9208s
5 Nikita Lastochkin Exclusive Autosport +6.6035s
6 Phillippe Denes FatBoy Racing +7.5689s
7 Sting Ray Robb Juncos Racing +7.9741s
8 Jacob Loomis JDL Racing +10.5813s
9 Kory Enders DEForce Racing +12.7469s
Ret Moises de la Vara DEForce Racing
Pole: Thomspon, 2m01.1248s
Fastest lap: Lindh, 2m02.2745s

Race 2 (15 laps)
1 Kirkwood 30m35.8260s
2 Lindh +0.5847s
3 Thompson +7.5904s
4 Rodriguez +13.8042s
5 Lastochkin +19.7676s
6 Loomis +34.8959s
7 Denes +35.0850s
8 Antonio Serravalle Pserra Racing/JHDD +37.1950s
9 Enders? +1 lap
10 Robb +1 lap
P: Lindh, 2m00.3697s
FL: Lindh, 2m01.6547s

Championship standings
1 Lindh 190? ?2 Thompson 160? ?3 Kirkwood 159? ?4 Danial Frost 152? ?5 Robb 146? ?6 Lastochkin 113? ?7 Denes 97? ?8 de la Vara 95? ?9 Enders 90? ?10 Serravalle 78