2009 IRL Team Reports: Vision Racing

IRL Team reports for the 2009 IRL season

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Postby mlittle » Mon Aug 03, 2009 8:47 pm

CARPENTER EARNS CAREER-BEST 2ND PLACE IN KENTUCKY PHOTO FINISH

SPARTA, Kentucky (Aug. 1, 2009) - Starting from the 14th spot on the grid for the Meijer Indy 300, held at the Kentucky Speedway, Ed Carpenter's drive for Vision Racing no less than stole the show in the No. 20 Menards Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine Saturday night under the lights. After passing seven cars in the first eight laps, Carpenter led a total of 34 laps and earned a career-best finish of second; finishing just behind Penske Racing's Ryan Briscoe by a margin of 0.0162 of a second in the IndyCar Series' closest finish at Kentucky.

At the finish, Carpenter earned most-improved driver honors by advancing his position 12 spots from a 14th place start on the grid (based on entrant points) to his second place podium finish. He also set the fastest lap of the race for the second consecutive time at Kentucky with a 218.498 mph lap average (24.3847 seconds) on lap eight. From there, he continued to slice his way through the field in dominant fashion.

With the help of four flawless pit stops by his Menards pit crew, Carpenter took the lead for the first time in the race on lap 137 and held it for 34 laps. Carpenter and Briscoe battled it out side by-side for the remaining 9 laps with Briscoe edging the no.20 Menards car by just fractions of a second each time they got to the scoring line. With both competitors leaning on their push-to-pass buttons on the white flag lap, the fans were treated to a breathtaking finish.

The second place result is not only a career-best IndyCar Series finish for Carpenter, but matches the team's best finish of second scored by Ryan Hunter-Reay in the team's No. 21 entry on the Streets of St. Petersburg in the 2009 season opener. It is however, the team's highest oval finish and adds to their previous best run here of third, scored by A.J. Foyt IV in 2007. This is Carpenter's first career IndyCar podium finish.

Carpenter's past successes at Kentucky included a sixth place drive while setting the fastest lap of the race last year, as well as another good run in 2007 when he finished seventh by charging from the back of the field after a stalled engine on his first pit stop. Carpenter has six attempts at Kentucky with a podium finish and three additional top-ten finishes.

Earning his fifth top-ten finish of the season, and his fourth career top-five, and taking second place, Carpenter jumped from 16th to 12th in the IndyCar Series championship point standings. He now has 226 total points after 12 races (190 points behind the leader).

Briscoe's victory put him in control of the championship point standings with 416 total points. Rounding out the podium with Carpenter was Tony Kaanan of Andretti Green Racing. In addition to a great battle for the photo finish, fans were treated to twenty lead changes and just one caution, making this race the second-fastest (in mph) in series history.

Watch the IndyCar Series next weekend as they take on challenge of the natural-terrain Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for the Honda Indy 200. The race broadcast will air live from Mid-Ohio on Sunday afternoon Aug. 9th at 1 p.m. (ET) on VERSUS.

Post Race Quotes: (Aug. 1, 2009)

Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone

"I passed 3 or 4 cars on the start so I had a good idea I had a good car. It was fun running on a mile and a half oval next to a Penske car and run side by side for that many laps at the end of the race. I was trying to run Ryan (Briscoe) as high as I could to make him run the long way around and keep him from getting a run but just had to race him clean and he raced me clean. I have to be happy with second. It's a career best for me but it hurts being that close to a win. It doesn't come around often enough. I was hitting the overtake button as often as I could on that last lap. I knew it was going to be close at the line. He was beating me to the line almost every time on those last few laps. I kept trying different things to try to get an edge and do anything but crash. It was nice to have him race me so clean since he wasn't used to racing side by side with the Menards car for the lead. The Vision crew guys gave me some awesome pitstops and they were as perfect as they could be. Those guys should be very proud of the job they did tonight. I have to thank Tony and my mom and all of our sponsors, Menards, John Mansville, Lilly, William Rast for their support. It's been a tough year for the Vision team and this is a good result to help turn things around for the rest of the season but we were just one spot off from making it that much better. This is great for moral."
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Postby mlittle » Sun Aug 09, 2009 1:11 pm

* TAKING THE VISION TO MID-OHIO: The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio will be Vision Racing's third trip to the natural terrain road course. The 2007 season was the Indy Car Series' first event there and the team secured a top-10 finish in the inaugural race as team driver Tomas Scheckter finished ninth after starting from the 12th spot. Fellow teammates A.J. Foyt IV and Ed Carpenter also participated in that event with Foyt starting 14th and finishing 13th while Carpenter started and finished in the 16th position. Last year, Carpenter and Foyt returned to Mid-Ohio for Vision Racing started 22nd and 23rd and finished 15th and 18th, respectively.

* WELLNESS TOUR IN MID-OHIO- The Vision Racing Wellness Tour, supported by team sponsor Lilly USA, will make an important pit stop for a second consecutive year at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course providing racing fans with FREE diabetes screenings with A1c testing and risk factor assessment, along with cholesterol and blood pressure testing. The Wellness Tour mobile unit (bus) will be located in the infield in the vendor area and will be open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday, August 9th, race day at Mid-Ohio.

* OH SO CLOSE: Last weekend at Kentucky Speedway, Carpenter earned a career-best finish of second, led 34 laps, was the most improved driver (started 14th) had the fastest lap of the race for the second consecutive season and put on an impressive display that stole the show as by crossing the finish line just 0.0162 of a second behind Ryan Briscoe of Team Penske. Not only was it Carpenter's career-best finish in 93 starts over six seasons, it was also Vision Racing's best oval finish and it also matched Ryan Hunter-Reay's second place finish for the team earlier this season on the streets of St. Petersburg. Hunter-Reay was runner-up to Briscoe in that race as well. It was the closest finish in the history of Kentucky Speedway and the 11th closest finish in IndyCar Series history.

* OUTPOURING OF SUPPORT: In response to Ed Carpenter's show stopping second-place photo finish on Saturday night, fans put on an impressive display of their own in the form of support and appreciation by way of tweets, Facebook posts, e-mails, text messages, voice mails, phone calls, and even some pats on the back. Following the Saturday night race in Kentucky on Aug 1st, 2009, hundreds of messages from viewers and fans began to come in via Twitter, Facebook and the team's website. All were either congratulations for the team's efforts or messages reacting to how exciting. nail-biting, and heart stopping the IndyCar race was thanks to Ed Carpenter's drive to the front and his battle with competitor Ryan Briscoe for Penske Racing. All the messages received (pages and pages of them!) were posted on the team bulletin board this week in the Vision race shop for all team members to read.

* HAPPY ANNIVERSARY: After forming and joining the Indy Racing League in 2005, Vision Racing is celebrating its fifth season of competition in 2009. Since the team embarked upon IndyCar Series competition, eight drivers have piloted five (Nos. 2, 20, 21, 22, 90) different team entries. Those drivers have combined for an additional 45 top-10 finishes, plus 10 top-five finishes, four more podium finishes and 76 laps led. Over the previous four years the quest for the team's first victory has been top priority and Vision Racing is confident that year five will be the season where that it happens. The team's best ever finishes occurred in the 2009 as Ryan Hunter-Reay drove from 14th to finish second in the season opener at St. Petersburg and Carpenter also drove from 14th to second at Kentucky Speedway. Hunter-Reay's podium finish also put Vision second in the championship point standings at the time which was also its' the highest-ever ranking. The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio will be the team's 79th IndyCar Series event since their first season in 2005.

* FIRST-HAND FROM THE FAMILY: Since the beginning of the season, Vision Racing team co-owner, Lauren George has been writing a blog, much to the enjoyment of the fans, which has been featured both on the team's Facebook fan page (www.facebook.com/VisionRacing) and on the team's new website (www.VisionRacing.com/fans). Her highly anticipated blog post that recaps the team's weekend at Kentucky is up and ready for reading. And if that's not enough, her father and fellow team co-owner, Tony George, got into the act in Edmonton by publishing his thoughts and opinions in response to a recent announcement he made exclusively on the team's website early in July. The latter George's post drew more than 16,000 hits to the site in less than one day. Both are planning to continue submissions periodically throughout the remainder of the season, exclusively at VisionRacing.com. Not to mention, Carpenter has begun adding a video blog to the site now in addition to his updates on his continued "tweets" at www.twitter.com/edcarpenter20.

* ON ROAD/STREET COURSES: The team's best finishes on a road or street course is second, recently scored in the 2009 season-opener at St. Petersburg by Ryan Hunter-Reay in his debut with the team. It is also the team's highest finish overall. Prior to Hunter-Reay's podium finish, the previous best road and street course drives include a fourth place finish scored by Paul Tracy in 2008 at Edmonton, and a pair of sixth place drives; one captured by Tomas Scheckter on the streets of St. Petersburg in 2007 and the other by Ed Carpenter in 2006 at Watkins Glen International. The team's best finish at Mid-Ohio came in 2007 when Tomas Scheckter finished ninth.

* ON LOAN: Considered a win-win situation for all involved, Vision Racing driver Ryan Hunter-Reay has taken over piloting duties of A.J. Foyt's No. 14 ABC Supply entry for the remainder of the 2009 IndyCar season in a deal that began at Iowa. Hunter-Reay, who drove the No. 21 Vision Honda Dallara to a second place podium finish in the 2009 season opener at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in Florida, and has transferred his driving services to A.J. Foyt Racing as a temporary replacement for the injured Vitor Meira
.

* AS SEEN ON TV: Patrick Dempsey joined Vision Racing prior to the 2006 season, taking on a new role that has been making hearts race in a literal way as a team co-owner. Known for his scene-stealing turns in such '80s nostalgia classics such as Can't Buy Me Love and Loverboy, Patrick Dempsey continues to please America with his explosive charisma and versatile talent. Dempsey is the star of the ABC drama "Grey's Anatomy." Dempsey's no stranger to the racetrack when he's not in front of the camera. A true racer at heart, he's currently driving professionally in Grand American Cup class sports car racing with Dempsey Racing, formerly Hypersport. He raced a Ferrari F430 GT with Team Seattle in this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans and also competed in the 2009 Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone:

* AT MID-OHIO: Carpenter has two starts at Mid-Ohio with his best attempt coming in 2007 when he started 16th and finished 13th. Last year, Carpenter started 22nd and finished 15th.

* MOST RECENTLY: Starting from the 14th spot (based on entrant points) on the grid for the Meijer Indy 300, held at the Kentucky Speedway, Carpenter's drive for Vision Racing no less than stole the show in the No. 20 Menards machine Saturday night under the lights. After passing seven cars in the first eight laps, Carpenter led a total of 34 laps and earned a career-best finish of second; finishing just behind Team Penske's Ryan Briscoe by a margin of 0.0162 of a second in the IndyCar Series' closest finish at Kentucky. As a result Carpenter jumped to 12th in the IndyCar Series championship point standings from 16th and now has 226 total points after 12 races (190 points behind the leader).

* BABY ON BOARD: Just as planned, Carpenter and wife Heather (Pettigrew) welcomed their second child into the world on June 1st as the 8 lb. 1 oz., 20 inch long Ryder Carpenter arrived on his due date. Young Ryder has been traveling the IndyCar Series circuit with his family at just a few weeks old; joining the schedule back in June for the Iowa event and tagging along ever since. Big sister, Makenna was born in October 2007, while the couple was married November 8, 2005 on the Island of St. Thomas.

* 2009 SEASON: This is the sixth full season in IndyCar Series competition for Carpenter and the seventh season that he has participated in overall. Carpenter is looking to build off of four top-ten finishes and a career-best second place finish at Kentucky Speedway. His top-ten finishes came on the ovals of Kansas, Indianapolis, Texas and Iowa. The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio will be Carpenter's 13th event of the 2009 IndyCar Series season.

* LEADER LAPS: In his fifth IndyCar Series start in at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500
in 2008, Carpenter recorded his first laps led in an IndyCar. He led the field for three laps under caution and finished an Indianapolis 500 career-best, fifth. He led again this season for a lap at Texas Motor Speedway and again last weekend for 34 laps at Kentucky Speedway. He has a total of 38 career-leader laps.

* BACK WITH MENARDS: The No. 20 Vision Racing machine again features the most recognizable car on track as it carries the day-glow yellow color of Menards for the second consecutive season. Menards returned as the primary sponsor of the No. 20 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone, driven by Ed Carpenter. The Menards sponsorship also continues a long-lasting relationship between the home store retailer with Carpenter. The 28-year-old driver carried the Menards livery in 2002, with Sinden Racing in Firestone Indy Lights competition and well before that his days of dirt track racing behind the wheel of quarter midgets.

* NEW VIEW FROM THE COCKPIT: Carpenter still has the same view from the cockpit that he's always had, but fans of the driver will notice a different look coming from his cockpit this season as his helmet is carrying the distinct colors and logos of the premium jean and clothing retailer, William Rast, for the 2009 season.

* ED "CARPENTER": Carpenter and his arsenal of power tools were busy again this past off-season as he was knee deep in a house flipping project with a long time friend as well as occupied with rehab projects around his own home. Of course, Menards has been an essential part of Carpenter's home repair ventures. Prior to his current real estate investment, Carpenter and his "do-it-yourself" mentality crafted his home repair skills with his first home and family heirloom. The home is located in Speedway, Ind. was purchased as new in 1955 by stepfather Tony George's parents, Elmer and Mari George. Tony grew up in the home as a boy and for a time, drivers A.J. Foyt and Roger McCluskey lived in the basement.

* DOUBLE DUTY: Ed Carpenter made history in September 2003 at Chicagoland Speedway when he became the first driver to compete in a Firestone Indy Lights event and an IndyCar Series event on the same weekend.

* INAUGURAL BRICKYARD WINNER: Carpenter won the inaugural Firestone Indy Lights Firestone Freedom 100 in 2003 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Making him an inaugural winner at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway along with Ray Haroun (Indianapolis 500), Jeff Gordon (Brickyard 400), and Michael Schumacher (United States Grand Prix).

* BIG MAN ON CAMPUS: Carpenter graduated from 2009 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament qualifying Butler University, Indianapolis, Ind., with a marketing degree in May 2003.

* DID YOU KNOW? Carpenter enjoys water skiing, snowboarding, hunting and cycling. His racing heroes include Al Unser Jr., A.J. Foyt, and Lance Armstrong and he has two dogs; a Rottweiler named Bentley and a Chihuahua named Rosco.

* ED AT-A-GLANCE: Carpenter is participating in his sixth season in the IndyCar Series, and his fifth with his second team in Vision Racing. The 28-year-old made his IndyCar debut at Chicagoland Speedway in 2003 for PDM Racing, which made him the first driver to compete in an IRL Indy Pro Series event and an IndyCar Series event on the same weekend. Carpenter, who has been with the team since it's inception in 2005, is determined to make his sixth season overall, the best for both he and the team. So far he's done that with a career-best second place finish at Kentucky Speedway in August with 34 laps led.
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Postby mlittle » Sun Aug 23, 2009 3:09 am

TAKING THE VISION TO INFINEON: The Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma will be Vision Racing's fifth trip to Infineon Raceway. The team's best finish at Infineon came in 2007 season when Tomas Scheckter finished eighth. The Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma will be the team's 80th IndyCar Series event since their first season in 2005.

WILLIAM RAST RETURNS: Vision Racing is bringing back the William Rast branded livery on the No. 20 machine which as most recently run by Carpenter during the Canadian swing through Toronto and Edmonton. This time the No. 20 William Rast Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine will ride in the sponsor's home state. William Rast, a People's Liberation subsidiary known for its stylish high-end denim, based in Los Angeles, Calif. and the premium lifestyle brand with emphasis on stylish denim, has been a mainstay on the Vision Racing body work all season. William Rast was also featured earlier in the year as a primary on the team's No. 21 car driven by Ryan Hunter-Reay for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach in April. Carpenter's car will feature a grey matte finish, day-glow orange accents and of course, William Rast branding.

OH SO CLOSE: Earlier this month at Kentucky Speedway, Carpenter earned a career-best finish of second, led 34 laps, was the most improved driver (started 14th) had the fastest lap of the race for the second consecutive season and put on an impressive display that stole the show as by crossing the finish line just 0.0162 of a second behind Ryan Briscoe of Team Penske. Not only was it Carpenter's career-best finish in 93 starts over six seasons, it was also Vision Racing's best oval finish and it also matched Ryan Hunter-Reay's second place finish for the team earlier this season on the streets of St. Petersburg. Hunter-Reay was runner-up to Briscoe in that race as well. It was the closest finish in the history of Kentucky Speedway and the 11th closest finish in IndyCar Series history.

ON ROAD/STREET COURSES: The team's best finishes on a road or street course is second, recently scored in the 2009 season-opener at St. Petersburg by Ryan Hunter-Reay in his debut with the team. It's is also the team's highest finish overall. Prior to Hunter-Reay's podium finish, the previous best road and street course drives include a fourth place finish scored by Paul Tracy in 2008 at Edmonton, and a pair of sixth place drives; one captured by Tomas Scheckter on the streets of St. Petersburg in 2007 and the other by Ed Carpenter in 2006 at Watkins Glen International. The team's best finish at Infineon came in 2007 season when Tomas Scheckter finished eighth.

Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone:

Finished second by 0.0162 of a second at Kentucky earlier this month; leading 34 laps.

AT INFINEON RACEWAY: Carpenter has been running at the finish in all four previous attempts at Infineon Raceway. However, he is still looking for his first top-ten finish there. In his first attempt at Infineon Raceway in 2005, Carpenter started 20th and finished 15th with Vision Racing. In 2006 season he started 16th and finished 12th, in 2007 he started the race from the 14th spot, ran as high as 12th and ultimately finished 13th, and last year he started and finished in the 23rd position.

MOST RECENTLY: Starting from the 21st spot, Carpenter drove a clean race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course two weeks ago. He drove as high as 13th in the event and finished 17th. Unfortunately, Carpenter fell one spot to 14th in the IndyCar Series championship point standings with 239 total points after 13 races (221 points behind the leader).
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Postby mlittle » Fri Aug 28, 2009 12:02 am

CARPENTER TO START 21st AT INFINEON RACEWAY

SONOMA, Calif. (August 22, 2009) -Vision Racing driver Ed Carpenter will start 21st in the No. 20 William Rast/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine for the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma on Sunday at Infineon Raceway. Carpenter's qualifying average came in at a time of 1:18.2413 and an average speed of 105.964 mph.

Carpenter has been running at the finish in all four previous attempts at Infineon Raceway. However, he is still looking for his first top-ten finish there. In his first attempt at Infineon Raceway in 2005, Carpenter started 20th and finished 15th with Vision Racing. In 2006 season he started 16th and finished 12th, in 2007 he started the race from the 14th spot, ran as high as 12th and ultimately finished 13th, and last year he started and finished in the 23rd position.

Most recently at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Carpenter started from the 21st spot, drove as high as 13th in the event and finished 17th. Unfortunately, Carpenter fell one spot to 14th in the IndyCar Series championship point standings with 239 total points after 13 races (221 points behind the leader).

Carpenter and Vision Racing will run the William Rast branded livery on the No. 20 machine in tomorrow's race which was most recently run by Carpenter during the Canadian swing through Toronto and Edmonton. This time the No. 20 William Rast Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine will ride in the sponsor's home state. William Rast, a People's Liberation subsidiary known for its stylish high-end denim, based in Los Angeles, Calif. and the premium lifestyle brand with emphasis on stylish denim, has been a mainstay on the Vision Racing body work all season. This weekend, Carpenter's car will feature a grey matte finish, day-glow orange accents and of course, William Rast branding.

Overall, The Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma will be Vision Racing's fifth trip to Infineon Raceway. The team's best finish at Infineon came in 2007 season when Tomas Scheckter finished eighth.

IndyCar practice resumes again tomorrow morning at 10:15 a.m. local time for a thirty minute session before the race beings at 2 p.m./5 p.m. (ET), live on VERSUS TV.

Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
"Qualifying did not go very well for us. We put our "reds" (Firestone Firehawk red-walled tires) on and Milka (Duno) was up in front of us so we let her go and even though we let her build a 20-second gap, that's still not enough for her so I caught her on the second lap and then once I got clear of her then (Mario) Moraes came out of the pits and I was behind him for two laps, so we wasted a lot of time getting stuck behind people. As a result we probably missed the best lap for our tires and I ended up getting out of rhythm in the session. I was hoping for much better than that, but it is what it is so we'll just try and improve upon it tomorrow."
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Postby mlittle » Fri Aug 28, 2009 12:03 am

CARPENTER EARNS TAKES 11TH AT INFINEON RACEWAY

SONOMA, Calif. (Aug. 23, 2009) - Vision Racing's Ed Carpenter piloted the team's No.20 William Rast Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine to a 11th place finish in the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma at Infineon Raceway on Sunday.

The 11th place drive gives Carpenter his best finish at Infineon. Carpenter has made five attempts at Infineon's natural terrain road course, all with Vision Racing, and has been running at the finish in each affair.

After qualifying in the 21st spot, Carpenter actually started 20th in Sunday's event due to a last minute tire change for fellow competitor Justin Wilson. After a first-lap incident which involved eight cars, Carpenter jumped up to the 11th spot and ran between there and the 16th position for the remainder of the race.

After a full course caution in the waning laps for a slide off by Helio Castroneves, Carpenter restarted the race on lap 71 in the 14th spot. He made a pass on Richard Antinucci and took advantage of an incident involving Scott Dixon and Marco Andretti on the final lap, to move up to the 12th position and finish on the lead lap at the checkered flag. Carpenter was awarded another position for an 11th place result after Andretti was penalized for avoidable contact. Carpenter made just two pit stops and overcame fading brakes to soldier on to his fifth consecutive running finish at Infineon.

The perseverance shown in Sunday's race by Carpenter allowed him to move up a spot and back into the 12th position in the IndyCar Series championship point standings. He now has 258 total points after 14 races (239 points behind the leader) and he's eagerly eyeing next weekend's 1.5-mile oval affair at Chicagoland Speedway. At the most recent 1.5-mile oval race, earlier this month at Kentucky Speedway, Carpenter led 34-laps and earned a career-best finish of second place by just 0.0162 seconds behind race winner Ryan Briscoe.

Dario Franchitti of Target Chip Ganassi Racing won today's race from the pole and put himself in just four points behind points leader and second place finisher Briscoe of Team Penske, who has 497 total points. Scott Dixon falls to third in points. Rounding out the top-five in the race were Mike Conway, Mario Moraes, and Hideki Mutoh.

Ed Carpenter - No. 20 William Rast/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
Finishing Position: 11th

(On the first lap mayhem) "You couldn't really seem much. There were cars everywhere and the further you went, the more cars you saw go off course. I was really surprised it didn't go yellow. I drove through like it was under yellow until I realized it was still green and started passing people. It was a little hectic. That made the race interesting from the start putting (Scott) Dixon behind and putting guys like me further ahead. There at the end, I was starting to struggle as I was losing the breaks and flat spotted the tires. The last half of the stint I was just limping around and couldn't really push the guys in front of me. I feel like we took a step in the right direction. We made some changes after the morning warm-up but didn't really fix the problems we were having out there. I wish we had had a little better car today so we could have made it into the top-ten."
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Postby mlittle » Sun Aug 30, 2009 6:02 am

TAKING THE VISION TO CHICAGOLAND: The Indy PEAK Antifreeze & Motor Oil Indy 300 will be Vision Racing's fifth trip to Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois, and it's first under the lights on Saturday night. The team's best finish came in 2007 when driver Ed Carpenter finished fifth. Last year Vision looked to have a breakthrough run on the 1.5-mile oval at Chicagoland as both Carpenter and A.J. Foyt IV ran as high as fourth in the 2008 season-finale, but their efforts were foiled by a mechanical failure for Carpenter while running in fifth, and a loss of grip for Foyt while running in sixth. The team is eagerly anticipating this year's race at Chicagoland after Carpenter led 34 laps and finished in second place by 0.0162 of a second at the most recent 1.5-mile oval at Kentucky Speedway, held at the start of August. The PEAK Indy 300 at Chicagoland Speedway will be the team's 81st IndyCar Series event since their first season in 2005.

OH SO CLOSE: Earlier this month at Kentucky Speedway, Carpenter earned a career-best finish of second, led 34 laps, was the most improved driver (started 14th) had the fastest lap of the race for the second consecutive season and put on an impressive display that stole the show as by crossing the finish line just 0.0162 of a second behind Ryan Briscoe of Team Penske. Not only was it Carpenter's career-best finish in 93 starts over six seasons, it was also Vision Racing's best oval finish and matched Ryan Hunter-Reay's second place finish for the team earlier this season on the streets of St. Petersburg. Hunter-Reay finished runner-up to Briscoe in that race as well. It was the closest finish in the history of Kentucky Speedway and the 11th closest finish in IndyCar Series history.

"OUR LADY OF ACCELERATION, DON"T FAIL US NOW": A race in Joliet, Illinois wouldn't be complete without at least one quote from the movie "The Blues Brothers" famous in part for it's incredible car chase sequences much like IndyCar Series is know for it's close racing on ovals. The team is looking to improve on their own car chase at the last oval they visited; The team's best finish on an oval is second by Carpenter who scored the podium finish at the beginning of August at Kentucky Speedway by just 0.0162 of a second after leading 34 laps. The team also has a pair of third place drives scored by Tomas Scheckter at The Milwaukee Mile in 2006 and again in 2007 by A.J. Foyt IV at Kentucky Speedway. Overall, Carpenter shares the team's best finish of second with fellow driver Ryan Hunter-Reay, when he, like Carpenter, started 14th and finished second, only Hunter-Reay did the feat on the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla. in the 2009 season-opener.

Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone:

* AT CHICAGOLAND SPEEDWAY: Ed Carpenter made history in September 2003 at Chicagoland Speedway when he became the first driver to compete in a Menards Infiniti Pro Series event and an IndyCar Series event on the same weekend. It was also Carpenter's first career IndyCar Series start and driving for PDM Racing he put in a respectable rookie run starting 16th and finishing 13th. In 2004 with Cheever Racing, he starting 16th again and finished 11th. With Vision Racing in 2005, he started 19th and finished 17th. In 2006 he started 12th and drove all the way to fifth which is the team's best finish at Chicagoland. In 2007 Carpenter started 14th and finished 16th as a result of a power failure mid-way through the race. Just last year, Carpenter started 13th and also made a hard charge through the field from the moment the green flag was waved to sit solidly in fourth position by lap 12. While still running in the fourth spot on lap 36, Carpenter suffered a right front suspension failure and made heavy contact with the wall which ended his race early.
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Postby mlittle » Sun Aug 30, 2009 6:02 am

CARPENTER TO START 12th AT CHICAGOLAND VISION RACING QUALIFYING AND PRACTICE REPORT

JOLIET, Ill.(August 28, 2009)- Vision Racing driver Ed Carpenter will start 12th in the No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine for the PEAK Antifreeze & Motor Oil Indy 300 on Saturday night at Chicagoland Raceway. Carpenter's qualifying average came in with an average speed of 213.331 mph.

Overall, The Indy PEAK Indy 300 will be Vision Racing's fifth trip to Chicagoland Speedway. The team's best finish came in 2007 when Carpenter finished fifth. Last year Vision looked to have a breakthrough run on the 1.5-mile oval at Chicagoland as both Carpenter and A.J. Foyt IV ran as high as fourth in the 2008 season-finale, but their efforts were foiled by a mechanical failure for Carpenter while running in fifth and a loss of grip for Foyt while running in sixth.

Previously at Chicagoland Speedway, Carpenter made history in September 2003 when he became the first driver to compete in a Firestone Indy Lights event and an IndyCar Series event on the same weekend. It was also Carpenter's first career IndyCar Series start and driving for PDM Racing he put in a respectable rookie run starting 16th and finishing 13th.

Driving for Cheever Racing for the 2004 season at Chicagoland Speedway, he starting 16th again and finished 11th. Moving to Vision Racing in 2005, he started 19th and finished 17th. In 2006 he started 12th and drove all the way to fifth which is the team's best finish at Chicagoland. In 2007 Carpenter started 14th and finished 16th as a result of a power failure mid-way through the race.

Just last year, Carpenter started 13th and also made a hard charge through the field from the moment the green flag was waved to sit solidly in fourth position by lap 12. While still running in the fourth spot on lap 36, Carpenter suffered a right front suspension failure and made heavy contact with the wall which ended his race early.

Most recently at Infineon Raceway, Carpenter started 20th in the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma and drove to an 11th place finish. As a result, Carpenter managed to move up one spot to 12th in the IndyCar Series championship point standings with 258 total points after 14 races (239 points behind the leader).

After finishing a career-best second place by just 0.0162 of a second and leading 34 laps on the most recent 1.5-mile oval race at Kentucky Speedway earlier this month, Carpenter and the team are eager to see if they can do just one spot better this weekend under the lights on Chicagoland Speedway's 1.5-mile configuration.

Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone

"People might have high expectations for us after our strong performance Kentucky. We have high expectations for ourselves after that too but places like this can be frustrating because the car handles well but it is hard to go any faster than it already is. It's like putting a car on a dyno. That was everything the car had. Kentucky is much more of a handling track where if you nail the right set up you can do well and you'll find a pack of cars that can run away from the rest. Chicago and Texas on the other hand, is more about the speed in the car. It's hard to beat those guys (Ganassi Penske) when it comes down to just pure speed but the cars are going to handle better here than they did at Kentucky so there will be closer and exciting racing. I don't think you'll have the fielded spread out. We just have to hope that everything goes right for us and others have some trouble. We'll give it our best shot and try to put ourselves in the best position possible to come away with. "
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Postby mlittle » Thu Sep 03, 2009 4:06 am

CARPENTER DRIVES TO SIXTH PLACE FINISH AT CHICAGOLAND

JOLIET, Ill. (Aug. 29, 2009) - Vision Racing's Ed Carpenter drove the team's No. 20 Menards Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine to a sixth place finish in an exciting PEAK Antifreeze & Motor Oil Indy 300 at Chicagoland Speedway in which the top 13 cars were separated by just 0.8269 seconds at the finishline.

Starting from the 12th position, Carpenter made quick work of moving through the field as he maneuvered to the fifth position by lap seven and made his way to fourth by lap 17. He ran as high as third in the race on a restart on lap 101. From there, Carpenter ran a strong clean race, his crew gave him efficient pit stops and he remained in the top-ten for the remainder of the event.

In the final stint however, Carpenter found himself behind a three-wide pack, running in the eighth spot with no way to get by. Thanks to a yellow flag on lap 184 as a result of Helio Castroneves making contact with the wall, the field regrouped and lined up for a restart, allowing Carpenter to make a final push to the front.

Taking the green flag for the final time on the lap 191 restart, Carpenter went from seventh and up to sixth on lap 195, but then fell as far as ninth when the white flag appeared on lap 199. In the remaining mile and a half, Carpenter made up three positions to take sixth overall.

Carpenter earned his sixth top-ten of the season and remains 12th in the IndyCar Series championship point standings with 284 total points (264 points behind the leader).

IndyCar Series championship point leader Ryan Briscoe of Team Penske won the Staurday night race by just 0.0077 of a second over Scott Dixon of Target Chip Ganassi Racing. Rounding out the top-five in the race were Mario Moraes, Dario Franchitti and Graham Rahal.

Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone

(On the race) The balance had just kind of gotten more understeer late in the race. It kind of seemed like we were better in the first half of the race and then others got better in the second half of the race than what we did. I don't know. We still had a good car at the end, but we just kept getting land-locked with guys running two and three-wide and then I would be sitting there with nowhere to go. I would rather be able to race like that, but it gets frustrating at times just because you have a good car and you get held back. The last lap was interesting because we started in ninth and got back up to sixth so it was still a good day. Obviously, we wanted to be on the podium again, so that's frustrating, but points-wise it was probably good with (Hideki) Mutoh dropping out and (Dan) Wheldon having trouble. Those are some of the guys that are in front of us so hopefully we closed up a little bit with some of those guys in points. I've got two more ovals now to try and do better.

(On the finish) It was pretty close. I was deciding whether or not I was going to lift ahead of the line if guys started touching, but it all worked out. It was close. It's a good thing we have timing and scoring, because in the old days they did the scoring by hand and if that was still the case, we would be trying to decide that finish a couple of days later.
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Postby mlittle » Fri Oct 09, 2009 2:57 am

Motegi: Vision Racing race report
Racing series INDYCAR
Date 2009-09-19

13TH PLACE FINISH FOR VISION RACING IN JAPAN

MOTEGI
, JAPAN (Sept. 19, 2009) - Vision Racing's Ed Carpenter took the checkered flag at Twin Ring Motegi in 13th spot aboard the team's No. 20 William Rast Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine at the Indy Japan 300 after a frustrating weekend of battling the car more than his Indycar Series competitors.

A notoriously challenging track, atypical of the other 1.5 mile ovals on the circuit, Ed Carpenter and the team struggled from the first practice to find the right balance and set-up to be able to take on the treacherous Turn 3 and 4 combination which would claim a handful of victims before the end of the weekend. Positive strides were made by the start of the qualifying session and the team felt they had finally made the adjustments they needed, enabling their driver to qualify 11th for the staring grid. However, as the green flag waved on Saturday afternoon in Japan, it was evident that the race and handling of the No.20 car was going to be more of a challenge than expected.

Carpenter did his best to counter understeer and lack of grip but fell back in the opening laps. He battled his way back in the second half of the race but having fallen two laps down was unable to crack the top-ten, but kept the car off the wall and crossed the finish with a hard earned but disappointing 13th place position finish for Vision Racing.

Carpenter's result in Japan keeps him in 12th place in the IndyCar Series championship point standings with 303 total points (267 points behind the leader).

Winner of the Indy Japan 300 from the pole position, Scott Dixon of Target Chip Ganassi retakes the lead in the IndyCar Series championship battle with just one race remaining. Previously atop the points standings, Ryan Briscoe of Team Penske made an unforced error in the pits as race leader, making contact with the wall at the pit exit, necessitating another stop to replace damaged tires and a front wing, dropping him back for 18th place finish. Dixon's teammate Dario Franchitti and Newman Haas Lanigan's Graham Rahal joined him on the podium, with Oriol Servia and Mario Moraes completing the top-five.

With just five points now separating Dixon from Franchitti in the championship standings, and just eight points ahead of Briscoe, and Vision Racing still working to earn their first IndyCar series victory, the upcoming IndyCar Series finale will no doubt be a no-holds-barred flat out battle. Don't miss the final chapter in the fight for the IndyCar Series Championship title at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida. The qualifying show will air Friday, September 9th, at 6 p.m. (ET) while the late afternoon race broadcast will air live on Saturday, October 10th, at 4 p.m. (ET) on VERSUS.
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