No Penalty for Bourdais

Forsythe Championship Racing have failed in their attempt to have Sebastien Bourdais punished for colliding with Paul Tracy in Saturday night's Las Vegas Champ Car race

No Penalty for Bourdais

Tracy's team management immediately announced that they would protest the Champ Car series leader following the incident on lap 123 of the Hurricane Relief 400, when Bourdais hit the back of Tracy's car as the Canadian slowed for his final pitstop, sending the Forsythe Lola into a wild spin and a heavy impact with the barrier.

But Champ Car race director Tony Cotman blamed Tracy for not following the correct procedure to indicate that he was about to pit.

"I made it very clear in the drivers' meeting that you needed to make your intentions (to pit) clear by putting two wheels below the white line on the back straight and then moving to the inside, and Paul did not do that," said Cotman in an interview with race broadcasters SPEED Channel. "Paul did not make his run into the pitlane until very late."

A panel of Champ Car judges later upheld Cotman's ruling on the grounds that "the alleged infractions of rules 6.27 and 6.28 were not subject to protest."

Team owner Jerry Forsythe made his displeasure at the incident clear to Cotman as well as to Bourdais' team boss Carl Haas. Before Cotman revealed his stance, Forsythe's vice-president Neil Micklewright announced that his team was determined to see Bourdais sanctioned.

"We're going to lodge a protest against Bourdais for reckless driving, unsportsmanlike conduct, the whole thing," said Micklewright. "All year long we've had problems with him and we're going to take it as far as we can."

Micklewright's comments suggest Forsythe may not be prepared to let the matter rest, but it is not clear that there are any official avenues left open to them in light of the judges' verdict.

Tracy was also critical of Bourdais.

"It's frustrating," said the 2003 series Champion. "He keeps doing the same thing and gets away with it.

"He didn't have the car to beat us tonight. I came from the back to the front in five laps and he didn't have anything for us, so that (the collision) was the way he had to beat us tonight."

The Las Vegas incident is the third clash between Tracy and Bourdais this year, following their collisions at Monterrey and in the Toronto pit exit.

Bourdais can now clinch a second consecutive Champ Car title in the next round at Ansan in Korea, while Tracy has dropped 94 points behind in the Championship with only 102 available in the final three races.

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