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De Silvestro to Start 23rd at Milwaukee IndyFest

Milwaukee, WI (Friday, June 15, 2012) - IZOD IndyCar driver Simona De Silvestro challenged the back of the field today at the Milwaukee Mile during qualification for tomorrow's Milwaukee IndyFest. The Swiss pilot of the #78 Nuclear Clean Air Energy car was less than a five-tenths of a second behind Charlie Kimball who qualified 21st and even closer to Oriol Servia's and Ed Carpenter's qualifying times.
The team has struggled all season with horsepower issues and is extremely excited to be gaining ground on the other engine manufacturers. HVM Racing is the lone remaining team running the Lotus engine and has been at a disadvantage early on due to the manufacturer's late arrival to the series. De Silvestro and the team have managed to keep competitive on road and street courses, but have had difficulties staying competitive on ovals.
De Silvestro was pleased with today's result. "I'm pretty happy to have out-qualified someone," she said. "I think we have a really good race car. We worked a lot and I think it's pretty impressive because we didn't come here and test. So I'm happy about that. We're just working on a good basic for tomorrow. Maybe we can get off-strategy a little bit so we can move forward and then I think we can run there. I don't think we'll be able to pass anyone, but I think we can definitely run with people and stay with people, so that's the important thing."
Today's performance offers De Silvestro, the team, the manufacturer and the sponsors a glimpse of a more competitive second half of the season.
Tom Brown, Lotus HVM Racing's technical director was proud of the effort given by the entire team. "I'm very, very impressed with Sim and the guys for putting this car together the way they did and engineering it," he said. "No testing, just turning up and spending an hour, hour and a half, and putting it as close as we did to some of these guys ahead of us. Given our situation, where we are, we're doing a heck of a job."
Team Manager Shane Seneviratne summed up the day. "We had a really good car," he said. "Our lap times are very close. With the deficiency we have with the horsepower I think the team is quite pleased to be competitive."
Tomorrow's Milwaukee IndyFest airs on ABC with coverage starting at noon Eastern.
About HVM Racing
HVM Racing was founded by Keith Wiggins and is based in Indianapolis, Indiana. HVM enters 2011 as its tenth year of competition since forming in 2001 and has earned six victories, two pole positions, and an additional 16 podiums. They earned "Indianapolis Rookie of the Year" honors with driver Simona De Silvestro at the 2010 event and since joining the IZOD INDYCAR Series in 2008, the team has earned nine top-10 finishes. HVM finished fourth and third, respectively, in the Champ Car World Series in 2006 and 2007, and earned drivers Mario Dominguez and Robert Doornbos Rookie of the Year honors in 2002 and 2007, respectively. Follow HVM Racing at, on twitter at, and on facebook at
About Lotus
Group Lotus plc, is based in Norfolk, UK, and has three operating divisions: Lotus Cars, Lotus Engineering and Lotus Motorsport.
Lotus Cars builds world class, high performance sports cars including the award-winning Evora, the iconic Elise and the stunning Exige and the road / track orientated 2-Eleven. Lotus New Era, the future product line-up, was unveiled in Paris on 30th September 2010 featuring the new Esprit, Elan, Elite, Elise and Eterne.
Lotus Engineering provides comprehensive and versatile consultancy services to many of the world's OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers and is an internationally recognised automotive engineering consultancy. Global facilities include those in the US, Malaysia, China and offices in Germany and Japan. Lotus is a global high-tech company, committed to driving forward technology for both Lotus Cars and its Engineering clients, spearheading research into such areas as hybrids, electric vehicles and renewable fuels.
Lotus Motorsport operates the motorsports activities of Lotus and includes the strategy to return the Lotus name to a great number of series including endurance racing with GT2, GT4 and LMP2, single seater racing with GP2, GP3 and IndyCar. Lotus has also returned to F1 with Lotus Renault GP from the start of the 2011 F1 racing season onwards.
For more information about Group Lotus please contact:
PR Department, Group Lotus plc, Potash Lane, Hethel, Norfolk, UK, NR14 8EZ
Tel: +44 (0)1953 608264 Email:
About Entergy
Entergy is the second largest owner and operator of U.S. nuclear energy plants. They operate or provide management services to 12 reactors at 10 sites. Entergy Corporation is an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity and delivers electricity to 2.7 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of more than $11 billion and more than 15,000 employees. Follow at and; on Twitter at and www.twitter/NuclearCleanAir, and on facebook at Clean Air Energy.
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