Gearbox Issue in Sonoma Results in a 26th-place Finish for Kimball
SONOMA, Calif. (August 28, 2011) – Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing (NNCGR) driver Charlie Kimball finished 26th in the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma.
Kimball arrived in Sonoma looking to build on his career-best finish of ninth at New Hampshire Motor Speedway after starting in the top-10 for the second consecutive race. The Novo Nordisk team would qualify 26th on the 2.303-mile road course, but their confidence never wavered that No. 83 Levemir and NovoLog FlexPen car had the speed to gain positions during the 75-lap race.
The green flag flew at Infineon Raceway and the Novo Nordisk team gave a preview to their strategy by opting to make an early pit stop on lap seven and race on fresh tires. Kimball maintained his pace and advanced eight spots, moving to 18th by lap 50. Unfortunately, the No. 83 encountered a gearbox problem on lap 54 causing Kimball to make an unexpected pit stop and go nine laps down. The Novo Nordisk team crossed the finish line in 26th-place.
With the finish, Kimball maintains third-place in the IZOD IndyCar Series Rookie of the Year point standings and 19th overall.
Charlie Kimball: “It was a tough day for Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing. I think we had the right strategy because the pace was pretty impressive when I had fresh tires. We were quicker than the guys we were racing. We had a gear box issue at the end and I wasn’t able to down shift. I was lucky to get it back to pit lane and the Novo Nordisk crew fixed the issue. I think the No. 83 Levemir and NovoLog FlexPen car will be quick at Baltimore; it’s new for everyone, but I think we have a pretty good street circuit setup.”