CARPENTIER FINISHES 19th IN NASCAR BUSCH SERIES RACE AT WATKINS GLEN August 11, 2007 -Patrick Carpentier finished 19th overall in his second start with Fitz Motorsports in Round 24 of 35 of the NASCAR Busch Series, the road course race...
CARPENTIER FINISHES 19th IN NASCAR BUSCH SERIES RACE AT WATKINS GLEN
August 11, 2007 -Patrick Carpentier finished 19th overall in his second start with Fitz Motorsports in Round 24 of 35 of the NASCAR Busch Series, the road course race held this Saturday at Watkins Glen International, New York. Earlier that day, the Canadian driver, who lives in Las Vegas, had qualified his #22 Fitz Dodge 20th overall on the 2.45-mile (3.94-Km) track.
Staying out of trouble in the early part of the race even though he had a slight contact with Max Papis who had just blown an engine on lap one, the team ran a different pit stop strategy from the leaders. Carpentier ran 21 laps in the top-10, several in second place behind Ron Fellows who was also running an alternate strategy. However, his strategy did not quite work out the way it was planned as he was running in mid-field following his last stop, Then contact with Australian Marcos Ambrose, who was trying to pass Carpentier on the inside on lap 77 of 82, spun him around and slightly damaged the right front wing of his Dodge after hitting the inside barrier. Carpentier still managed to move up two positions at the end to finish 19th out of 41 starters as some of the drivers ahead of him retired out of competition in the final stages of the race.
"The pit strategy did not work out the way we had planned it," Carpentier said about his final result. "In NASCAR racing, you never know what is going to happen at the end, it is almost the luck of the draw. The car was running real well at mid-point, and we had some good lap times, but our strategy was a bit risky. Some day it is going to work, other times it won't and today it did not. Marcos (Ambrose) made contact with me near the end of the race, but it did not change much. I was very excited about running in two series, but I am finding hard to cope with both as the cars are very different and my experience with them is very limited. Almost every thing is different in the set ups. Still, the experience is great."
Carpentier returned with Fitz Motorsports for a second consecutive race, this time at Watkins Glen following his surprising debut in the inaugural Busch Series race held last Saturday in Montreal where he collected the pole and finished second. Carpentier's success prompted the Quebec Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge Dealers Association, Federal Equipment and the Komatsu Group to continue their associate sponsors role on the #22 Fitz Motorsports Dodge while Supercuts and Family Dollar remained the team's primary sponsors on the purple and white car.
Kevin Harvick won his second race in a row after winning in Montreal, his fifth victory of the 2007 Busch Series season. He crossed the finish line three seconds ahead of teammate Jeff Burton to give Richard Childress's Chevrolet team a one-two finish. Harvick led 49 tours of the 82-lap race. Kurt Busch was the best Dodge finisher with a third place result ahead of the Chevrolets of Paul Menard and 19-year old Brad Coleman.
On Sunday, Carpentier will make his NASCAR NEXTEL Cup debut in the number 10 Gillett Evernham Motorsports Dodge Avenger. He will start in 40th place after qualifying was rained out on Friday. He did, however, run some good lap times during the practice sessions where he posted the 12th and 9th best time on Friday and finished 20th on Saturday. A Carpentier NEXTEL Cup race report will follow on Sunday afternoon.