by Lynne Huntting

Champ Car race director Tony Cotman has revealed that he wanted to go back to green flag conditions earlier than he did at the end of the final round in Mexico City, but was prevented from doing so by circumstances.

While many saw the caution, which came ten laps from the end of the 64-lap race, as an attempt to provide an exciting finish after Sebastien Bourdais had opened out an eleven-second lead over polesitter Will Power, Cotman insisted that there had been legitimate debris on track, after a piece of carbon-fibre broke off an underwing diffuser. However, even when the fans could see a marshal holding up the offending part, the track didn't go green.

"Two or three things happened at once," Cotman, who was also trying to reposition lapped cars during the yellow, explained, "By the time they had done so, we had gone by [start-finish] again and I was pushing to go green when Katherine [Legge] stalled in turn 17. I considered taking a chance and going green, but she thought her car might fire up. It didn't so, unfortunately, I had to go one more lap. I wanted to get back to racing ASAP."

Cotman also admitted that the decision to throw the yellow in the first place would not be universally popular, but maintained that it was the right thing to do.

"Bourdais isn't going to agree about the reasoning when he's leading, but it's racing," he claimed, "Things happen. I think I'm going to sign [the part] and give it to those guys for a Christmas present."


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