CHAMPCAR/CART: Denver: Bridgestone Saturday report

Bourdais Locks Up Season Battle for Bridgestone Pole Position Award Newman/Haas Racing Ace Collects Sixth Pole of 2006 Season in Denver Sebastien Bourdais has shown he knows how to qualify up front since taking the pole position in his very...

Bourdais Locks Up Season Battle for Bridgestone Pole Position Award
Newman/Haas Racing Ace Collects Sixth Pole of 2006 Season in Denver

Sebastien Bourdais has shown he knows how to qualify up front since taking the pole position in his very first Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford event in 2003. The talented Frenchman has continued that trend ever since. Today, Bourdais won the pole for Sunday's Grand Prix of Denver, his sixth Bridgestone Pole Position Award of 2006 and the 24th pole of his four-year Champ Car career.

Saving both his sets of red-sidewall Bridgestone alternate tires for final qualifying, Bourdais set a track record with his pole-winning lap of 59.096 seconds (100.941 mph). In the process, he collected $5,000 and a black crystal trophy for earning the Bridgestone Pole Position Award, with Bridgestone donating an additional $2,500 to the Hole in the Wall Camps. With just four races remaining, Bourdais also has clinched the season-long Bridgestone Pole Position Award chase, which will bring him another $20,000 and his Newman/Haas Racing crew chief Pedro Campuzano $7,500 at the championship banquet in November.

From Sebastien Bourdais, #1 McDonald's Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone:

"The Bridgestone red (alternate) tires were a little better for us today. They did connect the car some. I was happy with the grip and the feedback they were giving me. The McDonald's crew were on their game again today. It's the sixth pole of the year and it's good to start from the pole here. It's very tough to pass, the altitude makes the tire wear at a premium and running in clean air will help. As good as these Bridgestone tires are, it makes life a lot easier if you can stay out front."

Bridgestone Tire Performance Summary: Bridgestone Motorsport brought proven selections for both its dry-condition tire specifications this weekend. The standard (black-sidewall) spec was run previously this year at Houston, Toronto and San Jose. The higher-grip (red-sidewall) alternate spec saw action at Long Beach, Houston, Toronto and San Jose previously. Each car receives six sets of standard Potenzas and two sets of alternates for the weekend; at least one set of each spec must be run during Sunday's race.

From Al Speyer, Executive Director, Bridgestone Motorsport:

"Sebastien certainly has proven to be a master at qualifying and we congratulate him on wrapping up the season-long Bridgestone Pole Position Award competition with four races still to go. The Bridgestone reds are giving drivers up to about four-tenths of a second advantage in lap times this weekend, but as has been the case this season, there are some who prefer the balance with the primary black-sidewall tires. Throw the possibility of rain and the Potenza wet-condition tires into the mix tomorrow, and we believe tire selection will play a prominent role in determining the outcome."

Qualifying session temperatures ranged from 104 to 108 degrees track and were a constant 84 degrees ambient (F).

Qualifying session temperatures ranged from 40 to 42 degrees track and were a constant 39 degrees ambient (C).

-credit: bridgestone

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Sébastien Bourdais