WATKINS GLEN, New York -- It wasn't a lack of effort that hampered Vision Racing and driver, Ed Carpenter's qualifying attempt for the Watkins Glen Indy Grand Prix, presented by Argent Mortgage. In fact, it was perhaps too much effort that caused...
WATKINS GLEN, New York -- It wasn't a lack of effort that hampered Vision Racing and driver, Ed Carpenter's qualifying attempt for the Watkins Glen Indy Grand Prix, presented by Argent Mortgage. In fact, it was perhaps too much effort that caused Carpenter to make contact with the wall on the final corner just before taking the green flag for his one-lap qualifying run.
The contact wasn't severe enough to keep Carpenter from completing the run, but it did keep him from equaling or improving upon his fastest recorded time from the morning's practice session. After rain, mist, and fog caused havoc on Friday's practice sessions, today's clear skies and a dry track were a welcome sight and allowed the team to establish a better set-up on the car. In the 10 laps that the team was able to complete this morning, they were able to improve upon their best time, which was recorded at a recent test.
That momentum positioned the team well for qualifying where they had hoped to achieve their quickest time of the weekend thus far. As Carpenter let it all hang out, his determination met the wall, so to speak, and postponed Vision Racing's attempt to improve their best lap speed until tomorrow's race. Regardless, the team was pleased with the effort and their objectives for the race still stand.
Carpenter will start from the rear of the field in what will be just the third road course event in the Indy Racing League IndyCar Series, but this also marks the third IndyCar road course race in Carpenter's career as well. The inexperience has created quite a learning curve for the young driver, but he's pleased with his progress and hopes to complete tomorrow's race with the goal of gaining more road racing experience. Should Carpenter finish tomorrow's affair, it will place the team in a position to finish four races in a row, a feat they've already accomplished once so far in their debut season.
Held at the historic Watkins Glen International Raceway, the Watkins Glen Indy Grand Prix, presented by Argent Mortgage starts at 3:30 p.m. (EDT) on Sunday, Sept. 25 and will be broadcast on ABC, IMS Radio Network, Extreme XM (Channel 152) and on the web at www.IndyCar.com.
Ed Carpenter -- #20 Dallara/Toyota/Firestone
"This one lap qualifying thing is hard for me, but I was trying to do the best that I could. I was pushing hard on that out-lap trying to get a run off that last corner for my lap. We had some push there in practice and made some changes, but it looks like we haven't got it all dialed out just yet. It hurt us, but we didn't tear it up so that's good. I'm not sure if I was going to be able to beat anybody in qualifying or not, but I sure was trying. So we'll see how it goes in the race."