FORT WORTH, Tex. -- Panther Racing didn't leave the Lone Star State with a memorable finish at Texas Motor Speedway Saturday at the Bombardier 500. Instead, both Panther Chevrolets were out of the race before the conclusion of the race. Tomas ...
FORT WORTH, Tex. -- Panther Racing didn't leave the Lone Star State with a memorable finish at Texas Motor Speedway Saturday at the Bombardier 500. Instead, both Panther Chevrolets were out of the race before the conclusion of the race. Tomas Scheckter experienced a damaged suspension in his Pennzoil Panther Dallara while running three-wide, and the Panther Pack was unable to repair the damage. Rookie Mark Taylor -- who was running inside the Top Five for a majority of the race -- made contact with the outside retaining wall on the backstretch of the 1.5-mile oval.
Scheckter completed 48 laps in the race, after starting in eighth. He finished his fifth race with Panther Racing in the 20th position. Taylor, the 2003 Menards Pro Series Champion, finished in 17th after the accident. Taylor qualified for the race in 10th.
The disappointing finish was rare at Texas Motor Speedway for Panther Racing. The winningest team in IRL history has recorded four victories at TMS, one each year from 1999-2002. Panther will participate in the Milwaukee Open Test next Wednesday and Thursday with both Scheckter and Taylor.
"Well, I'm very disappointed. Obviously, the Pennzoil Panther team and everyone at Chevrolet have been working very hard and they gave me a great racecar. I guess it's just part of racing at Texas. I had a great re-start and had a good run when we went three-wide with (Ed) Carpenter and (Scott) Dixon. Somebody hit my left front and it bent the suspension to where I couldn't drive the car any further so we pulled the Pennzoil car out of the race. We're all very disappointed right now. But I have to thank my team and the Chevy guys for a great car."
"I'm not sure what happened out there. I was behind Vitor and the back end stepped out on me, and I thought I could save the car. There might have been some oil in the track from Scott Sharp's car. I just didn't have enough space to make a recovery and we wound up in the wall. It just seems like we can't buy a break this year. My Menards/Johns Manville car was just great. It was great in traffic, and the Chevy power had us running right up front. This team deserves a good finish after how hard they have worked this season. I'm going to do everything in my power at Richmond to make sure that happens."