IRL: Homestead: Vision Racing race report

VISION RACING SCORES A PAIR OF TOP TEN FINISHES IN SEASON OPENER HOMESTEAD, Fla. -- Vision Racing drivers Ed Carpenter and Tomas Scheckter got off to a great start in the 2007 IndyCar Season as the teammates finished sixth and eighth in the XM...

VISION RACING SCORES A PAIR OF TOP TEN FINISHES IN SEASON OPENER

HOMESTEAD, Fla. -- Vision Racing drivers Ed Carpenter and Tomas Scheckter got off to a great start in the 2007 IndyCar Season as the teammates finished sixth and eighth in the XM Satellite Indy 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

The team's new third entry driven by A.J. Foyt IV finished in the 18th spot after getting caught up in an accident on lap 92.

It was with much anticipation the season-opener got underway, especially after brief rain showers delayed the start of the race. Eventually, the south Florida night sky cleared and action got underway at the 1.5-mile oval.

Starting in the 14th spot, Carpenter carried the Vision Racing banner tonight in the 200-lap, 300-mile event as he moved through the field, ran as high as second and finished sixth. The jump in positions gave Carpenter the biggest move in the field of 20 drivers.

The strong run gives Carpenter and the team a career-high points standing (sixth), and allowed Carpenter to pick up right where he left off in 2006. In the season-finale last year Carpenter finished a career-high, fifth in the No. 20 Vision Racing/Dallara/Honda/Firestone, at Chicagoland Speedway; another 1.5-mile oval.

Scheckter, who started from the 11th position, also ran a strong race, mixing it up as high as third and battled Helio Castroneves on the last lap to take eighth in the No. 2 Vision Racing Honda/Dallara/Firestone.

Leading the team in qualifying for his debut with Vision Racing, Foyt took the green flag in ninth and also ran well. However, a spin by Jeff Simmons caught Kosuke Matsuura on lap 92 and the accident became unavoidable for Foyt as he too was collected in the accident.

While the incident was disappointing, Foyt and the team are encouraged by his run in the No. 22 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone and are optimistic for the remaining 16 races.

Of course, Foyt won't have long to redeem himself as the IndyCar Series is back in action next weekend, Sunday March 31, for the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

Ed Carpenter -- No. 20 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone

On race:
"I was really happy with how we finished last season, so to start up this season the way we did tonight, with running up front and inside the top ten makes me very happy. I'm thrilled for the Vision Racing team who did a great job for me. We've got some great people on board now, with new sponsor, CardioChek, and a lot of great things going on with the team now and I just want to thank everybody for a great night. Now I need to go into St. Pete and continue this and get a good run there. The thing with road and street racing is if you just keep your nose clean, then you never know what might happen for you. That's my plan going into St. Pete. I just want to run good laps, stay out of trouble, and see where we come out."

Tomas Scheckter -- No. 2 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone

On race:
"I just want to thank everybody, CardioChek, Bombardier Learjet, and IndyCar on Joost is going to here soon so I'm looking forward to that, but overall, we had a good night. We really had an awesome run with Ed and I mixing I up with the leaders. We got the setup a little bit wrong in the beginning. I wasn't where I wanted to be in the beginning, but we got it sorted out during the race and put together a nice run."

A.J. Foyt IV -- No. 22 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone

On race:
"It's a tough start to the season. We had a good car, but it looked like Jeff (Simmons) lost the rear in turns three and four and he got into the top side and I didn't have anywhere to go and got collected in it. It wasn't our fault this time, but it's unfortunate for the Vision team. My guys worked really hard to give me a good car and now it's all tore up. But we'll be back at St. Pete ready to go.

-credit: vr

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Helio Castroneves , A.J. Foyt IV , Kosuke Matsuura , Ed Carpenter