Patrick Carpentier captures third place at Rockingham. Notes: ROOKIE DARREN MANNING FINISHES NINTH IN HIS CART DEBUT - Player's/Forsythe driver Patrick Carpentier finished third in the Sure for Men Rockingham 500 at the Rockingham Motor...
Patrick Carpentier captures third place at Rockingham.
ROOKIE DARREN MANNING FINISHES NINTH IN HIS CART DEBUT - Player's/Forsythe driver Patrick Carpentier finished third in the Sure for Men Rockingham 500 at the Rockingham Motor Speedway in Corby, England. Scotsman Dario Franchitti delighted the hometown crowd by taking the victory, while championship points leader Cristiano da Matta finished second. Rookie Darren Manning, who was also making his first CART start in front of his hometown fans, drove a strong race to clinch a ninth-place finish for himself and Team St. George.
PATRICK CARPENTIER (#32 Player's/Indeck Ford) - Finished 3rd - "I've got to thank my guys because today the team did a fantastic job. In the pits we passed a lot of cars and that's how we got up front. I'm going to have to take these guys to a pub now and buy them a beer, but it was a fantastic day. The engine was working really well all day long. I was hoping to make a pass on Cristiano (da Matta) but it was tough so I just decided to take the points for third place and go on to the next one."
JIMMY VASSER (#8 Shell Ford) - Finished 7th - "We had a really good racecar (but) we just started too far back. We made our way forward with a few spots in the pits but we just couldn't go any faster than the cars in front of me. Other than that it was a decent race for us and the guys did a good job in the pits. We lost a couple of spots there too, but I think it was just a matter of track position and where you could get it."
DARREN MANNING (#19 Team St. George Ford) - Finished 9th - "I'm pretty pleased. We made a good call on the pit stop strategy under one of the yellows and everything fell right for us. Unfortunately we lost an air jack on one of them and that caused us to loose about 10 seconds and three or four places or we could've finished better. I was taking things very steady, especially in traffic because the car had a lot of push and I didn't want to put the car into the wall. I made a couple of passes but altogether it was a bit dodgy. I had one scary moment after the first pit stop on cold tires I had a big slide coming through (Turn) two and I thought this was all over, but it was alright." YOU DEFINITELY SHOWED PEOPLE WHAT YOU COULD DO. "Yeah, I was holding my own with most of the guys out there and some of the runners at the front of the field." YOU FINISHED AHEAD OF A GUY NAMED MICHAEL ANDRETTI. HOW DOES THAT MAKE YOU FEEL? "I had a good battle with him quite a few times so I'm pretty pleased." HOPEFULLY THIS WILL BE A FIRST STEP TOWARDS A FULL TIME RIDE IN CART? "I hope so. A top 10 (finish), which we thought would be a fantastic result, and we achieved that in such a short period of time. I'm sure we could accomplish a lot more if we have more time in the future."
DALE COYNE, Owner, Team St. George - "He did a great job and his times were consistent all day long. He kind of got caught in some traffic early so we made the decision to pull him out of sequence and run with the yellow stops and that paid off. We lost a rear winglet but he ran strong and he said the car didn't feel bad so the kid is brave. He did a great job. To finish ninth in his first race is something to be proud of."
MICHEL JOURDAIN, JR. (#9 Gigante Ford) - Finished 11th - "The car was okay. We ran faster in the race than we did during qualifying but starting in the back is very difficult. I just have to qualify better because that is just killing us. I made a big mistake by turning off the pit speed limiter and we lost two laps there with the penalty. We managed to make the laps back but then we lost one again at the end. We just need to keep working at it ... we've had good cars. We just have to get it right during qualifying and we'll win pretty sure I'm sure."
ALEX TAGLIANI (#33 Player's/Indeck Ford) - Finished 18th - "I'm very disappointed for my guys because I think it was an electrical problem. The car started misfiring between (Turns) one and two and then I lost the all the readouts on the dash. We thought it was the battery going down but I guess it was something electrical. It's too bad for my guys because we had a very good car today."