FONTANA, Calif. -- Rain is uncommon in Southern California this time of year, but it was that kind of day for the Red Bull Cheever Racing team at California Speedway. Morning rain delayed the start of the Toyota Indy 400, which saw Patrick ...
FONTANA, Calif. -- Rain is uncommon in Southern California this time of year, but it was that kind of day for the Red Bull Cheever Racing team at California Speedway. Morning rain delayed the start of the Toyota Indy 400, which saw Patrick Carpentier in 16th and Alex Barron in 17th on the grid.
When the green flag dropped, both Barron and Carpentier held their cars solid in their starting positions for the first part of the race until an accident on lap 32 forced teams to make decisions on their pit strategies. Only a handful of the cars chose to pit, which broke up the field on different fuel strategies for the remainder of the race.
Carpentier ran a clean race, but he was driving a car that gradually lost power as the race went along. As a result, he wasn't able to make his usual climb through the field despite cracking the top 10 on lap 52. When the checkered flag was shown, the #83 car was in 15th. By finishing the race, Carpentier has completed more laps than any other driver this season.
"It was a long race. I think we had a chance to battle with those guys. I am not sure what happened there at the end. The thing seemed to tighten up and that was it. It was good early in the race but as we were running the speeds kept going down more and more. There was nothing left at the end. On the season, we completed the most laps, which is a good thing. It's been great. I have enjoyed it. We have really improved from the beginning of the season to now. Hopefully next year I will have a little more help behind me and we will continue to move forward," Carpentier said.
Barron also stayed safe and avoided any mistakes. His effort produced a slightly better result when he brought the #51 car home in 14th.
"The car was well balanced all day. We just made some fine adjustments in the pits. I had everything I needed in the car to correct any slight changes throughout the runs. We just lacked speed. I was flat out in the draft and guys were pulling away from me. It's really unfortunate because our pit stops were good. We finished, but we didn't anywhere near where we thought we would," Barron said.
This brings the 2005 IndyCar Series season to a close. In the series points standings, Carpentier claims 10th, while Barron comes in 11th.