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Luis Schiavo captures Trois Rivieres demonstration race
Submitted by Dan Mazzella on Monday, August 8, 2005 - 11:30am

Trois Rivieres, QC, Canada. Luis Schiavo of Caracas, Venezuela, drove to victory today in the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear demonstration race on the historic Trois Rivieres street circuit at Trois Rivieres, Quebec, Canada. Evading a first lap incident between pole sitter Andre Desmarais and Brandon Thomas, Schiavo, driving the UltraLub/HASA Pool Products/Energy Freight/Venezuela/Grand Prix de Trois Rivieres Mazda pulled away to victory by 31.512 seconds over Tim Jennings. Thomas, who set fast lap at 1:03.081 as he worked his way back to third place during the 40 lap event, was moved to the final finishing position after the event by the Chief Steward.

"This is a very special event for me," Schiavo, the 2003 Star Mazda Champion, explained afterwards. "My engineer Remi Lataigne calls Trois-Rivieres home and I fell in love with the track as soon as I completed my first lap. Remi has told me the history of the race and to finish on top of the podium here is tremendous although I was disappointed when Andre and Brandon crashed in the first corner as I would've enjoyed racing them, especially as Andre and I were once teammates and still friends."

Jennings, of Downers Grove, IL, driving the Kaminsky Racing Mazda, would inherit third place at the start and moved into the second position when hometown hero Stephan Roy, of Trois Rivieres, suffered a mechanical failure after a spin as he came through the final corner. Holding on to score his first podium finish in the new Pro Formula Mazda, Jennings was both pleased and surprised. "This was my first start in a while and I was glad that I wasn't in the middle of the accident," Jennings said. "Schiavo pulled away and I was running on my own for most of the race although I knew Brandon was closing in on the final laps."

Finishing third in the event after the stewards action was John Faulkner, of Pittsford, NY, in the Peregrine Motorsports Mazda. Faulkner a championship contender in the Masters Championship, for Star Mazda drivers aged 45 and older, never put a wheel wrong as he made his first start on a road course.

Held as a non-points demonstration race this season, the event will become a full championship event starting in 2006 through 2008. Lataigne, who has worked to bring the series to his hometown, is thrilled with the weekend's turn of events. "Growing up in Trois Rivieres, this is where I first got involved in autoracing and having worked for Formula Ford, Atlantic, and now Star Mazda here it is always exciting," he would explain. "I think the fans have had a taste this year and will be amazed next year when the full field of competitors takes to the circuit."

The series now heads to Road America, at Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, for Round Nine of the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear on August 18-20.

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