Justin Wilson Wins West Edmonton Mall Grand Prix CDW / RuSPORT driver captures third career Champ Car victory; Cristiano da Matta taken out in Turn One and finishes 18th EDMONTON, Alberta, Canada, July 23, 2006 -- Justin Wilson ( ...
Justin Wilson Wins West Edmonton Mall Grand Prix
CDW / RuSPORT driver captures third career Champ Car victory; Cristiano da Matta taken out in Turn One and finishes 18th
EDMONTON, Alberta, Canada, July 23, 2006 -- Justin Wilson (#9 CDW / RuSPORT Ford-Cosworth / Lola / Bridgestone) captured his third career Champ Car World Series victory at the West Edmonton Mall Grand Prix presented by The Brick. His teammate, Cristiano da Matta (#10 RuSPORT Ford-Cosworth / Lola / Bridgestone), was unfortunately taken out of the race in a Turn One incident on the first lap of the race, and officially finished in 18th place.
In the process of winning the race, Wilson recorded the fastest lap time of the event and set a new track record for quickest lap, stopping the clocks on lap 82 at 59.200 seconds. The victory and the fastest race lap moved Wilson back into second place in the Champ Car World Series driver's championship, just 23 points behind the leader, Sebastien Bourdais.
"It was a fantastic day," said Wilson. "I've really got to thank my whole crew. They did some fantastic pit stops, and my engineers did a great job with the strategy and also with the car setup. I'm very pleased that we made this one happen and pulled this one off. It's great to do this for CDW Canada, as well."
"It was a very disappointing day," said da Matta. "Bruno Junqueira forced Mario Dominguez to the outside of the front straight, and I was carrying a lot of momentum but had nowhere to go, and wound up in the tire wall. I was feeling good before the race, and at the start. I think we had a car that was good enough for the top five or six, but we had some bad luck in qualifying and couldn't start where we were supposed to start, so the incident is just a result of all that. If we could have started closer to the front, I think we would have been okay."
"It's a bittersweet day," said RuSPORT president Jeremy Dale. "Obviously we're extremely proud of everyone who helped get the No. 9 CDW car to the top step of the podium today. It was a great day, and a great achievement. Justin drove brilliantly all day, the strategy was great, the car was very quick, the pit stops were just outstanding, and the entire No. 9 car team really deserved the win today. Obviously, we have many guests here from CDW Canada here with us this weekend, and it's great to have them along for the ride."
"Cristiano had a very, very tough day, and a very tough weekend" continued Dale. "Starting 14th, it's not surprising to get caught up in an incident in the first turn. It wasn't his fault, a car spun in front of him and forced him into the wall, and he was the first car out of the race. He and his entire team worked hard all weekend, and they were quite certain that they had a good race car. But we'll regroup for San Jose. It's obviously nice to head there with a victory in our back pocket, and we'll look to keep the momentum going."
The 2006 Champ Car World Series continues with the San Jose Grand Prix on Sunday, July 30. The race will be broadcast live on NBC at 3:30 pm EDT.