VISION RACING READY TO TACKLE THE TWISTS AND TURNS OF INFINEON INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Aug. 23, 2006) -- Vision Racing heads to Sonoma Wine Country and the 2.3-mile Infineon Raceway with its sights set on a pair of top-five finishes this weekend in...
VISION RACING READY TO TACKLE THE TWISTS AND TURNS OF INFINEON
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Aug. 23, 2006) -- Vision Racing heads to Sonoma Wine Country and the 2.3-mile Infineon Raceway with its sights set on a pair of top-five finishes this weekend in the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma. Entering the 13th of 14 IndyCar Series events, team drivers Tomas Scheckter and Ed Carpenter are also eager to continue their climb in the IndyCar Series driver championship point standings.
The team is entering the final two races of the season with five top-ten starts and eight top-ten finishes in a row. Not to mention, Scheckter has back-to-back top-five finishes late this season, including the team's best ever finish of third. Consistent finishes the latter half of the season have allowed Scheckter to move up steadily in the point standings where he and the No. 2 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone now sit in the eighth spot; the highest-ever for a Vision Racing entry.
Infineon Raceway will host the third of three IndyCar Series road/street courses for 2006 and if Scheckter's strong performances on the previous two road/street courses are any indication, then he should have a formidable run on Sunday. On the Streets of St. Petersburg, Scheckter started eighth and drove to fourth where he was running before contact with Buddy Rice ended his race with just three laps to go. At Watkins Glen International, he started 15th and quickly drove to the front; leading 12 laps and eventually rounding out the top-ten.
Scheckter noted, "We've been really improving all season long so I'm looking forward to going to Infineon. I have some unfinished business there so I'm ready to get back there and have a better finish this year. I've also had some good showings at the road and street courses earlier this season so I expect good things from myself and the team at Infineon this weekend."
In his first attempt at Infineon Raceway last season with Panther Racing, Scheckter started 14th, but finished 16th after suffering suspension failure. However, his performances of late should give him the momentum he needs to turn his luck at Infineon around.
Carpenter, like his teammate, has also had his share of strong performances in the second half of the season. In fact, he's on his way to having the best season of his young career in 2006. Carpenter has continued to show much improvement this season, especially on road courses, including his best-ever finish of sixth at Watkins Glen earlier this year in the No. 20 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone.
"I think I have improved a little this year," Carpenter noted. "I feel like I haven't had that many laps on the road course. I managed to have a really good finish at Watkins Glen just by being smart and racing the race. I plan to have some more speed at Infineon than what I had at Watkins Glen, but I just need to run a smart solid race, and we will get another good finish."
Carpenter has driven his way to several good starts and finishes this season. He currently has five top-ten finishes and a streak of three consecutive top-ten starts, including a career-best start of fourth recently at Michigan International Speedway. The consistency has allowed Carpenter to move from 15th to 14th in the driver point standings.
Carpenter said, "With only two races left, I really would like to move up a few more spots in points. To accomplish that, I really need to have a solid run at Infineon. We had good cars at Watkins Glen, and I am sure we will at Infineon as well, so I just need to run a smart race and make sure I am in front of the people I am chasing in points."
Carpenter faired a little better than Scheckter last season at Infineon, starting the race in 20th and finishing 15th, but both drivers know that they must have better results this year. Perhaps more importantly, both Carpenter and Scheckter know that they have the right equipment and personnel in place to have a better race at Infineon this year.
As Scheckter put it, "We really have been competitive at all of the road and street courses this season so I really want to capitalize on that at Infineon."
Look for the Vision Racing cars to make a run at the top-five and the lead as the 80-lap, 184-mile Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma gets started at Infineon Raceway on Sunday afternoon, August 27th. The race will air at 3:30 p.m. (EDT) on ESPN, IMS Radio Network, XM Satellite Radio channel 145 and on the web at www.IndyCar.com.