Philippe takes top ten as Rangers day ends early Toronto,ONT (10 July 2005)-- Mi-Jack Conquest Racing drivers Nelson Philippe and rookie Andrew Ranger finished tenth and eleventh in an exciting Molson Indy Toronto for round six of the Champ Car...
Philippe takes top ten as Rangers day ends early
Toronto,ONT (10 July 2005)-- Mi-Jack Conquest Racing drivers Nelson Philippe and rookie Andrew Ranger finished tenth and eleventh in an exciting Molson Indy Toronto for round six of the Champ Car World Series after both young drivers showed good speed during the race.
Philippe, who scored his first career top-ten position on a Champ Car grid, was looking for a strong result on a late race restart when another car tried to make it three wide heading into the narrow first turn and made contact with Philippe, sending him spinning into the path of another car. Philippe was able to continue with another quick stop for repairs from the Mi-Jack Conquest crew to take his first top ten of the season. JRanger started the race from eleventh position, but kept the pace and with some good pit stops moved up through the field during the race to be sitting sixth with just two laps remaining, but the young Canadian, who led the rookie standings heading into the race, made a mistake and found himself without power and out of the race.
"Andrew was in a good position late in the race, but it looks like he accidentally hit a switch in the cockpit that shut the engine down," said team co-owner Eric Bachlelart after the Mi-Jack Conquest team did a thorough inspection after the race. "The car ran normally after the race. It was a tough day for us because we had two cars that were both very fast, but unfortunately, they both had problems that kept them from scoring the points that they could have."
For Philippe, the contact was disappointing, but he still focused on the positives from the race weekend.
"It was a good weekend overall, but unfortunately events during the race put us out of a better result," said Philippe. b^0x001cThings are looking good for the rest of the season--we showed in this race that we do have a good pace and improved through the weekend. Racing in Canada is great because the fans are so enthusiastic, so hopefully we can be fast again and get a good finish next weekend in Edmonton."
Ranger, who took a podium finish in the Toronto race last year in his rookie season in Toyota Atlantic, had been eager to show well again in front of his home crowd and was well on his way to doing so before his race ended early for the young Canadian.
"The car was faster than it had been all weekend, and we had great pit-stops and good strategy," said Ranger. "Unfortunately, nothing happened when I tried to downshift going into turn five with just a couple of laps remaining, and it ended the race for me. I'm disappointed because I could have finished 6th and kept the lead in the rookie standings, but we'll race again in Canada in a week, and I hope we can be fast again and get to the finish."
Team co-owner Bachelart has been working hard to move his team forward competitively and the results showed as both young drivers had strong races, but knows that some days it can take both speed and luck to score the results in the competitive environment of the Champ Car World Series.
"Nelson was quick early in the race, and we tried different strategies that could have worked, but he was slower in a few laps and that put him a lap down . We missed two good opportunities today, but while the results don't show how good we were this weekend, we are continuing to make progress and there were some positives that we can take out of the race weekend as we get ready to race again in just a week in Edmonton."