Skerlong Back in the USA Mukilteo, Washington (July 25, 2007) -- Carl Skerlong is hoping a return to his native America will see an upswing in his on-track fortunes as he gets set to compete in the penultimate round of the 2007 Cooper Tires...
Skerlong Back in the USA
Mukilteo, Washington (July 25, 2007) -- Carl Skerlong is hoping a return to his native America will see an upswing in his on-track fortunes as he gets set to compete in the penultimate round of the 2007 Cooper Tires Presents The Champ Car Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda this weekend in San Jose, Friday 27th -- Sunday 29th July.
Round 11 of the 12-race schedule sees the Champ Car World Series' official feeder category back in America on the 1.5-mile temporary street circuit in downtown San Jose following a four-race stop-over in Canada. For 18-year-old rookie Skerlong, who scored a season's best finish of second place in Houston in April, the trip north of the border proved to be a frustrating time. Despite flashes of the pace that kept him locked inside the top-ten in the Driver Standings through the first half of the season driving the #24 King Taco/US RaceTronics entry, climbing as high as sixth overall, unimaginable bad luck saw the Seattle racer post three-straight DNF's from four starts to arrive in San Jose sitting 12th in the points.
With one mechanical retirement and two more thanks to being hit by rivals and sustaining terminal damage, Carl's results, on paper at least, fail to showcase that the talented young American was on-course for top-six finishes in each of his last three starts -- finishes that would dramatically alter his position in the standings heading into the final two races of the season, starting with San Jose this weekend and wrapping with a trip to Wisconsin's famed Road America on Sunday 12th August.
"It's time for our luck to change," declared Skerlong ahead of his flight to San Jose. "We were back on pace last weekend in Edmonton but our bad luck followed us once again. That said, I learned a lot from the meeting and heading into this weekend's race I definitely think we have the speed to be competitive. We've known that all year to be honest but things haven't always turned out the way we'd have liked.
"Everybody told me pre-season how difficult street courses are but I guess they really suit my style of driving. I've taken as much as I can from each opportunity to race on these tracks and it's served us pretty well, we've probably learned things a lot faster than we maybe expected. Heading into San Jose I've looked at quite a bit of data from the track and watched videos of the race -- I was actually at the race last year as a spectator as well! All that should help but there's no substitute for track time. I can't wait to get going on Friday."
Round 11 starts in San Jose at 3:30pm EST on Sunday 29th July.
ESPN2 will air the race as a tape delayed broadcast on Thursday 2nd August starting at 5:30pm EST.