CHAMPCAR/CART: Assen: Round 12 preview

CHAMP CAR WORLD SERIES READY FOR ACTION IN ASSEN Dutch fans will be out in droves to cheer on hometown driver Doornbos ASSEN, THE NETHERLANDS (August 28, 2007) -- The Champ Car World Series teams did not get much time to recuperate from last ...

CHAMP CAR WORLD SERIES READY FOR ACTION IN ASSEN
Dutch fans will be out in droves to cheer on hometown driver Doornbos

ASSEN, THE NETHERLANDS (August 28, 2007) -- The Champ Car World Series teams did not get much time to recuperate from last Sunday's race in Zolder. Only hours after the race was finished, everything was packed up and ready for transportation to Assen where Round 12 on the Champ Car 2007 season schedule will be disputed this weekend.

After a day of sightseeing and traveling, the teams were back at work today getting the cars prepped for the second and final European Champ Car race, the Bavaria Beer Champ Car Grand Prix of Holland presented by Audi, Hertz, Gant, Pioneer and Jumbo. The final leg on the Phanos Champ Car European Team Cup competition will take place at the TT Circuit Assen, a 2.83 mile road course which is normally used for Moto GP races.

The man of the hour this weekend will be local driver Robert Doornbos (#14 Minardi Team USA Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone). After a disappointing race in Zolder last weekend, the Dutchman, who comes from nearby Rotterdam, would like nothing more than to score a victory on his home turf in front of his Dutch fans and close the gap to Sebastien Bourdais (#1 Mc Donald's Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) in the Championship standings.

Doornbos may be in the spotlight this weekend but the man to beat will be France's Bourdais who has scored victories in the last two races. The three-time Champ Car Champion is the only driver to score consecutive wins this season and will be looking to tie his season record of three victories in a row and become undefeated in Europe. The Frenchman currently leads the point standings by 53 points.

Bourdais along with his rookie teammate Graham Rahal (#2 Medi | Zone Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) will try to clinch the Phanos European Team Cup in Assen. Rahal who accompanied Bourdais on the podium in Zolder helped his team gain a 9.5 point advantage on the second place duo of Will Power (#5 Aussie Vineyards Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) and Simon Pagenaud (#15 Aussie Vineyards Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) of Team Australia.

The Aussie Vineyards drivers came out on top in the Canadian Triple Crown competition and would like to keep their crown as the top team by claiming the European Cup. Power has scored seven top four finishes since the start of the season, including two wins, and Pagenaud has five top five finishes and is still searching for his first podium finish.

The battle for the European Team Cup may be looking like a fight between Team Australia and Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing once again, but it is still anybody's game. The third to fifth places are only separated by 3.5 points with the Daly Coyne Racing pair of Bruno Junqueira (#19 Sonny's Bar-B-Q Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) and Katherine Legge (#11 Dale Coyne Racing Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) sitting comfortably in the top-five. Junqueira helped his team with a second place finish in Zolder last Sunday. His performance was the best in the 24 year history of Dale Coyne Racing.

After sitting out last weekend's race in Zolder due to a suspension, 'Speedy' Dan Clarke (#4 Minardi Team USA Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) is awaiting word from Race Director Tony Cotman on if he will be allowed to get back behind the wheel of his DP01 car and help his teammate Doornbos fight for the European Team Cup. Cotman is set to announce his decision on Friday morning.

The rest of the European contingent will all be looking to improve on the result they achieved in Belgium. Aside from Bourdais' first place finish, the top European driver was Justin Wilson (#9 CDW Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) with a fifth place. All may be aiming for a better finish but none more than Belgium's Jan Heylen (#34 Grafiprint Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) who had a frustrating race weekend at his home track crossing the finish line in 13th.

The action at the Bavaria Beer Champ Car Grand Prix of Holland gets underway on Friday with the first round of qualifying at 2:00 pm local (8:00 am Eastern Time). The final grid will be set on Saturday at 2:00 pm local (8:00 am Eastern Time). The race will go green Sunday at 1:00 pm (7:00 am Eastern Time) and will be broadcast live on ESPN Classic in the United States and on Eurosport2 in Europe.

-credit: ccws

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Justin Wilson , Bruno Junqueira , Graham Rahal , Sébastien Bourdais , Robert Doornbos , Katherine Legge , Jan Heylen , Will Power , Dale Coyne , Dan Clarke
Teams Dale Coyne Racing