Bryan Herta Autosport’s second driver. Saavedra finished third in the 2009 championship after battling his teammate and eventual champion JR Hildebrand all season long. He had never raced on an oval, let alone a superspeedway, before coming to the Firestone Indy Lights series, yet he won his first oval race at Kansas in the most racing treacherous conditions I’ve ever seen. He backed up his strong oval performance with great run at the Firestone Freedom 100 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Throughout the season, Saavedra did show some signs of impatience, but there’s absolutely no denying that he has serious pace. With a little bit of temperance, he could easily be a series champion.
For the past two years, the AGR/AFS team has seemed unstoppable, fielding both the 2008 and 2009 champions in the #26 car. Last year, however, Bryan Herta Autosports driver James Davidson made a strong run at the end of the season to overtake Saavedra for second place in the season championship. Adding Saavedra to their other 2010 driver, Stephan Wilson, puts BHA in a strong position to be a serious challenger for the championship this season.
The opening round of the Firestone Indy Lights season will be on the Streets of St. Petersburg on March 28th. Sadly, the TV coverage for FIL was terminated for 2010, but you can still stream the races live on Indycar.com, or catch the race summary right before the IndyCar Race.