Barrichello wants IndyCar to classify him a rookie

JOHN ZENOR AP Sports Writer Published:

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) -- Rubens Barrichello wants IndyCar to classify him as a rookie.

The 19-year Formula One veteran doesn't care so much about being eligible for rookie of the year honors. He just wants the extra 30 minutes of practice time IndyCar grants rookies.

Barrichello, competing in Sunday's Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama, says he's still learning the car and isn't familiar with courses like Long Beach.

He finished 17th in his debut at St. Petersburg after mechanical problems kept him from his first practice session.

Series rules allow IndyCar to decide whether to give a driver rookie status.

Beaux Barfield, IndyCar's president of competition, says the decision on Barrichello was made based on past precedent and the level of experience.

Barrichello wants the series to reconsider.