Formula Bmw Usa San Jose Grand Prix Preview

By: Hailey Kerr

As Formula BMW USA joins the Champ Car World Series for two consecutive race weekends, the San Jose Grand Prix will host the 9th and 10th rounds of the 2007 Formula BMW USA Championship on July 27 - 29. Seventeen young drivers entered the race with a 1.5-mile, 7-turn Redback Raceway. Reports say it will provide quite a contrast to the rolling 4.0-mile, 15-turn Road America circuit where Rounds 11 and 12 will be held on August 9 - 12.

Part of the BMW 325e parts making company; the Formula BMW USA Championship passed the midst of the season at Lime Rock Park on July 6 - 7. Round 8 marked the 50th Formula BMW USA race since the series started in 2004.

So far, three young men have stood on the top step of the podium. They are also atop the overall point standings. Daniel Morad (Eurointernational), one race winner last year on his way to the Rookie Championship, has earned five more victories this year, making him the driver with the most career Formula BMW USA wins and a 77-point leader. Sophomore driver Sebastian Saavedra (Eurointernational), who had an advance win in Round 7 at Lime Rock Park, placed second in overall points. Rookie Esteban Gutierrez (Autotecnica) after two 17th place finishes at Lime Rock may have fallen five points behind Saavedra, but the 15-year old still leads the Rookie standings. Gutierrez is a holder of a record six straight poles in Rounds 1 through 6.

Behind these three are Maxime Pelletier (HBR Motorsport Team USA), Alexander Rossi (Team Apex Racing USA) and Steven Guerrero (HBR Motorsport Team USA) standing fourth, fifth and sixth respectively.

Series graduates also continue to shine as they climb the motorsport ladder. The San Jose Grand Prix will seem to be a reunion as many graduates compete in the Champ Car Atlantic Championship. Taking the overall pole, Robert Wickens (2006 Formula BMW USA Champion) finished second in the opening round of the Champ Car Atlantic season at the Las Vegas Grand Prix and won in just his fourth start in Portland. Eight more Formula BMW USA graduates are racing in Atlantics this year: James Hinchcliffe (04), Kevin Lacroix (05), Matt Lee (06), Tom Sutherland (04, 05), Simona De Silvestro (06), Frankie Muniz (06), Adrien Herberts (05, 06) and David Garza (06).

Among the first group of Formula BMW USA Junior scholarship winners, Graham Rahal became the first Formula BMW USA graduate to earn a full-time drive in the Champ Car World Series with his start at Las Vegas this year. He became the youngest ever to reach a Champ Car World Series podium with his second-place finish in the Grand Prix of Houston just this April.

Round 10 qualifying will be held on Saturday at 11:50 - 12:20 p.m.

The Round 9 race will be held on Saturday at 3:20 - 4:05 p.m. and on Sunday, just shortly after a 15-minute morning warm-up at 8:00 a.m., the Round 10 race will begin at 9:55 a.m.

Extreme Sports
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Extreme Sports
 



Share this article :
Click to see more related articles