CHAMPCAR/CART: da Matta, Fittipaldi Vancouver Friday notes

1CRISTIANO da MATTA, ...


1CRISTIANO da MATTA, #6 Texaco/Havoline/Kmart Toyota-Lola: "After running the second fastest time in the morning session we were all pretty optimistic. We made some changes with the car in the afternoon session that didn't work so we didn't run as high as this morning but we're still competitive. Since the last race, we have learned some things about our car that will hopefully help us with the last seven races. With only seven races left in the championship and the fact that we are only 32 points back from first, we need to make the most of our opportunity to finish as high as possible in every race."

· NOTE: Only 32 points out of first place in the Championship while in seventh. Will be his third Champ car race at Vancouver and first with NHR. Da Matta finished seventh last year after running in third until he had to pit for fuel with only five laps to go. In '99, he finished fifth after starting in 17th. Clinched the Indy Lights Championship here in '98. Da Matta has won two Indy Lights races at Vancouver, one in '98 and the other in '97.

CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI, #11 Kmart Toyota-Lola: "The car is much better than P (position) 13 but I couldn't get a clear lap. I wanted to run one more lap but I would have run out of fuel. Overall the balance of the car is okay but we still have some work to do before we are ready for the race. It's great to be back in Vancouver. Last night, I took my mechanics go-karting at F 440 and we had a great time. Everyone enjoys coming to the Canadian races. Molson does a great job promoting them so it's good that there will now be a third race promoted by them in Canada next year."

· NOTE: Is currently 56 points back from first place in the Championship standings in 11th place with 54 to leader Castroneves, 110. In five starts at Vancouver, Fittipaldi's best finish at the track is third in 1996, after starting in 14th position. Last year he finished fourth; in 1999 he was unable to compete; finished 14th in 1998 due to contact late race with Hearn; finished 9th in 1997 because of contact on the last lap; and finished 24th in 1995 as a result of exhaust failure.

Qualifying for the Molson Indy Vancouver will air 1 a.m. ET Sunday on ESPN2. CART 2Day airs 11 a.m. Sunday on ESPN2, while ESPN2's race broadcast begins 6 televised live on ABC-TV or ESPN and 18 are being televised live on Eurosport, a European network that reaches 250 million viewers in 54 countries. Sunday's race will also air on the CART Radio Network and on CART's official website, at www.cart.com .

-NHR

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