MONTEREY, Calif., (September 11, 1998) - The number 24 MCI/Panasonic Duskin Toyota was damaged in a crash Friday morning in Vancouver, putting the team one car down on the first day of a two-race road trip. Immediately, a phone call was made to the shop in Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., requesting the spare tub and bodywork be overnighted via Federal Expressed to Seattle.

The shop group hustled to collect and pack all the parts needed. The team hired a truck to go to Seattle. The MCI/Panasonic Duskin crew stripped the car, salvaged the good parts, accounted for the bad parts and reordered a list of required spares from Reynard. By 8 p.m., the race team completed everything that could be done, including having the backup car prepared for the next day.

In the meantime, Parts Coordinator Steffan Pfeiffer and Transportation Manager Kaspar Fellman had headed to Seattle to pick up the two large Federal Express boxes. Pfeiffer and Fellman arrived at the airport to receive delivery of what would be the team's fourth car. When they returned to the track, the track was hot, so with only one option remaining, six team members carried the tub and bodywork pieces over the pedestrian bridge to the MCI/Panasonic Duskin pit. The tub was put on high stands with a portion of the crew remaining in the paddock to begin the arduous task of building a new car.

By the end of the first qualifying session, the engine, gearbox and the suspension were installed. Both race teams finished preparations for Sunday and all hands were on deck to complete Gordon's race day back-up car. After a steady team effort from both Papis and Gordon's crews, the bodywork was finally fitted and the car was rolled into the truck with only some decals, and the exact same race set-up as the primary car. Yet the primary car still needed fitting before Sunday's warm-up began.

Though the car was not needed, the team effort earned everyone a much deserved day off in one of the CART FedEx Championship Series' most popular markets. This task was quickly accomplished through the efforts and cooperation of the crew at Arciero-Wells, the traveling race team and Federal Express. Sending an entire race car is not the typical package, but Federal Express delivered it there on time, helping the MCI/Toyota team get ready for the race.

To keep up with the Arciero-Wells Racing teams, be sure to call the team hotline at (949) 589-0278, x2791. Please note the new area code.