What are your thoughts heading into this weekend’s race at Infineon Raceway?
“I am really excited about this opportunity and about being in the NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota. I get to drive for NAPA in the NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Montreal as well. Now to drive in Sonoma, I feel like I am becoming a part of the NAPA family. For me to drive the car for Michael Waltrip, who is a legend in NASCAR, is amazing. I am extremely happy about all of this. I really couldn’t believe it when I got the call to drive for Michael. I am looking forward to it and will do my best to make the most of this experience.”
Now that you have been to Michael Waltrip Racing, what do you think about the equipment you have access to especially since you are no stranger to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series?
“For me, it is one of the most well organized race teams I have seen. From entering the entrance which is like a Hall of Fame … the theater … the sponsor presentations … and then walk past and enter the shop, it is the perfect shop to prepare world-class cars. It is truly impressive. I am excited. The guys asked me what I needed from setting up the pedals to the seat. They were willing to adjust based on what I wanted and what I thought. It is really great. I know the organization has really been coming on strong lately – especially with the finishes at Charlotte and Pocono. It’s impressive so far. I think I am coming in at the right time.”
You’ve had just a little time with crew chief Bootie Barker and the team to get acclimated. What is your goal for this weekend?
“I need to get as many points as possible. I want to run up front and battle with the leaders. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens. Once we get there, we’ll have to get to work since we did not have the time to test the NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota. Fortunately, Marcos has been in the car and I’ll have a chance to exchange information with him so I think we’ll be fine. I’ve met with Bootie and he’s been pretty straight forward with me. We seem to see eye to eye so hopefully, we’ll run well. I would really like to run well for Bootie, Michael and NAPA. I feel like I have the most support I have ever had so I think it is going to fun. And then there’s Toyota. What more can you ask for?”
What are your impressions of the COT?
“The car is definitely different. Funny enough, on a road course, I have always liked driving this car. I remember the first year at Watkins Glen, I had the COT and I also drove a Nationwide car. Once I got into the COT, I thought it had a tremendous amount of power. I really enjoyed driving it. I know some people have called it a flying brick, but I look at it as more of a rental car on steroids. That’s what it is to me and the guys have told me to drive it like I stole it. That’s what I am going to do and just see what happens.”
Patrick Carpentier Fast Facts
NAPA AUTO PARTS Driver Patrick Carpentier Sprint Cup Statistics – Infineon Raceway
Toyota/Save Mart 350 - June 22, 2008
2009 NAPA AUTO PARTS PIT CREW
|Shannon Myers||Front Tire Changer|
|Chris Hall||Front Tire Carrier|
|Tony Cardamone||Jack Man|
|Andy Thurman||Rear Tire Changer|
|Dwayne Moore||Rear Tire Carrier|
|Shawn Soules||Catch Can|
|Ron Otto||Eighth Man|
|Mike Ellershaw||Hose and Sign|
|Craig Harper||Gas Runner|
|Mark Maloney||Second Gas Can|
Race: 16 of 36
Toyota/Save Mart 350
Length: 1.99-Mile, 12-Turn Road Course
Distance: 110 laps/ 218 miles
Date: Sunday, June 21
Time: 4:30 p.m. ET
Radio: PRN; Sirius XM Satellite Radio, Ch. 128
2008 Winner: Kyle Busch
2008 Pole: Kasey Kahne
Friday, June 19 at 6:30 p.m.
Fri., June 19 at 3 p.m.
Sat., June 20 at 12:30 p.m. &
This Week in NASCAR
Monday, June 22 at 8 p.m.
Only on SPEED
All Times Eastern