When the green was shown, Saavedra was on the move. Unfortunately, a few turns later the trak went yellow for a two-car collision and Saavedra was forced to run off-track to avoid the melee, but rejoined the field in 13th place. At the restart (four laps later), he began to show the pace of his car by first overtaking one car and then a couple of laps later another. By lap 16, Saavedra was running in sixth, had set the fastest lap time of the race, 67.1471 seconds and was moving on fifth place. However on lap 23, Saavedra reported an issue and made an unscheduled pit stop. The crew assessed the problem, but had to return to garage ending his race in 20th. Ironically, It took until late in the race for him to lose the fastest lap, by three tenths of a second to Helio Castroneves.
Commenting on his retirement, Saavedra said, "What an unfortunate situation. The entire No. 17 KV AFS Racing crew has put a huge amount of effort in this weekend and it's just unbelievable that this situation has happened. Somehow we need to get out of this run of bad luck we have been having. We have the car, we have the mentality and we just need to find a way to show it. We will move on and look forward to a good weekend in Milwaukee in a couple of weeks."
The 24-year-old Colombian made his third IndyCar start here this weekend. In his previous two races, he has a best finish of 20th (today and last year) and earned his best start of 14th yesterday. Saavedra picked up 10 points and sits 21st in the championship standings with 239 points.
Born in Bogotá, Colombia, Saavedra has been among the youngest drivers in nearly every series he has competed in. He joined the Firestone Indy Lights just before his 19th birthday and that year was awarded Rookie of the Year Honors with AFS Racing/Andretti Autosport. He moved to Bryan Herta Autosport for 2010 where he made his Indianapolis 500 debut becoming the third Colombian driver to do so. Saavedra then stepped up to the IndyCar Series in 2011 with Conquest Racing before returning to Indy Lights in 2012. Last year he spent the entire season back in IndyCar with Dragon Racing.
Next up for KV AFS Racing is the ABC Supply Wisconsin 250 at Milwaukee Speedway in West Allis, IL. The 250-lap race will be broadcast live on NBCSports from 3 p.m. ET. and IMS IndyCar Radio can be heard on Sirius 213 and XM 209, check local listings for your local station, or listen at IndyCar.com or on Verizon's INDYCAR 14 app.