Munoz Wins, But Karam Is Lights Champion
FONTANA, Calif. — Carlos Munoz grabbed his fourth Firestone Indy Lights victory of the season and Sage Karam wrapped up the series championship during Saturday’s Lefty’s Kids Club 100 at Auto Club Speedway.
Munoz, driving for Andretti Autosport, took the lead from Gabby Chavez on lap 11 and led the remainder of the 50-lap race on the two-mile oval, beating Chaves to the checkered flag by 0.9966 second for the victory.
“There’s no better way to finish (the season) than to win,” said Munoz, who also won the 2012 Firestone Indy Lights race at Auto Club Speedway. “I was a little bit sad because I couldn’t get the championship, which was my main goal this year (the 12th place at Houston eliminated him from contention).
“After that second-place at the Indy 500, I think was the moment of my career. I have to thank my team, Andretti Autosport, all my mechanics. I’ve been together with them for two years. Hopefully it’s time to move up and I will try to do that. I have to thank everyone at Andretti Autosport.”
Karam brought his Schmidt-Peterson Motorsports machine home third and won the title by 11 points over Chavez.
“I was crying on that last lap, just to know the dream is almost in reach and to be in the IndyCar Series racing with my heroes,” the 18-year-old Pennsylvania driver said. “This season started out OK and it went really bad in the middle. We bounced back somehow and we’re champions now.
“The team just put together an awesome car week-in, week-out. I can’t thank them enough. The Comfort Revolution car is always fast, every week. I don’t know what else to say; I’m just so excited.”
Zach Veach and Jorge Goncalvez rounded out the top five.
It was the last race for Firestone’s long-running sponsorship of the series.