Sunday, May 22, 2011
Patrick Carpentier crashes at Indy
INDIANAPOLIS -- Things couldn't have gone much worse for Dragon Racing in May.
After Chinese rookie Ho-Pin Tung crashed team owner Jay Penske's No. 8 entry last week and Scott Speed struggled, the team flew in veteran Patrick Carpentier to try and get Speed's No. 20 car into the Indianapolis 500 on the last day of qualifying Sunday.
Carpentier spun coming out of the first turn and slammed into the outside wall, causing serious damage to the left side of the car. He was cleared to drive after crashing, but the team didn't have a backup car.
The team tried to come up with a plan to get a car ready, but with 3½ hours of qualifying left, the team was packing up.
"We looked into quite a few different things," team manager John Cummiskey said. "It just came down to we were running out of time and felt it was in our best interest to regroup and move onto the next race."
Cummiskey couldn't believe the team didn't get an entry into the race.
"It's really disappointing for everybody," Cummiskey said. "It's disappointing for the sponsors, for the drivers, for the crew."
Carpentier said he was dizzy when he first got out of the car.
"I thought it was going to be a fun comeback, but it was a hard comeback," he said. "What can you do? I was just starting to enjoy it."
It was just a continuation of the month's bad luck.
"It's really disappointing, I'll tell you," Carpentier said. "I know these guys had a tough month. I thought I'd be able to come in and at least post a time for qualifying."