Carpentier points haul boosts A1 Team Canada A1 Team Canada climbed to ninth in the A1GP Nations Standings today courtesy of a double points- scoring run from Patrick Carpentier in the penultimate round of the 'World Cup of Motorsport' at the ...
Carpentier points haul boosts A1 Team Canada
A1 Team Canada climbed to ninth in the A1GP Nations Standings today courtesy of a double points- scoring run from Patrick Carpentier in the penultimate round of the 'World Cup of Motorsport' at the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Sixth place in the Sprint followed by fifth in the Feature rewarded the Canadian team with 11 priceless points in a day where A1 Team France clinched the inaugural A1 Grand Prix of Nations Championship while A1 Team Mexico scored back-to-back victories. Sprint Race, 16-laps; 30-minute time limit (Winner -- A1 Team Mexico, Salvador Duran) With a sudden downpour greeting the field just minutes before the start of the race the grid became a hive of activity as slick tires were hurriedly swapped for wets.
The rain failed to faze Laguna-veteran Patrick Carpentier in the A1 Team Canada car as he gingerly picked off his rivals on the opening lap to climb five places to 13th. When the safety car was summoned for a second tour of duty, this time on lap 8, the charging Carpentier was looking strong in eighth. Taking two more spots at the checkered flag, the race distance determined by the time limit, Patrick bagged a welcome five points, his sixth place effort further safe-guarding A1 Team Canada's top-ten points standing. Feature Race, 40-laps, 1-hour time limit (Winner -- A1 Team Mexico, Salvador Duran).
In keeping with the changeable conditions the Feature race started on a predominantly dry track. Initially out on wet tires, Carpentier made his mandatory pit-stop on lap 3, switching to slicks and immediately firing himself back into the top-ten. Following a six-lap safety car period the 34-year-old set his sights on further progression, quickly passing the Czech Republic for eighth. The second-half of the Feature saw Patrick up to sixth and chasing A1 Team Portugal five seconds further up the track. A second safety period allowed the pack to close up before Patrick was elevated to fifth at the checkered flag thanks to an uncharacteristic late-race retirement from A1 Team France.
Patrick Carpentier: "The rain actually helped me in the first race as some people made mistakes and I was able to get past them at the start. From there I just worked my way up to get a good start position for the Feature. I was fighting to catch Portugal at the end of the main race but it was still pretty slippery out there. Overall though it's been fun and we scored points and improved our position. Today was a lot better than yesterday that's for sure, it's all a learning experience and I really enjoyed myself out there!"
Shanghai, China hosts Round 11 of the A1 Grand Prix of Nations, 31st March -2nd April 2006.