Gil de Ferran made the CART debut at Rockingham Speedway a memorable one, diving past Kenny Brack and into the lead on the final lap of the darkness-shortened event and holding on to win by 0.634 seconds. It is de Ferran's first victory in 2001...
Gil de Ferran made the CART debut at Rockingham Speedway a memorable one, diving past Kenny Brack and into the lead on the final lap of the darkness-shortened event and holding on to win by 0.634 seconds. It is de Ferran's first victory in 2001 and his third since joining Team Penske and Firestone last year.
DeFerran relied on his Firestone Firehawk tires to take him wherever he needed to go on the track. He led the most laps (83) and had the confidence in his tires to make the outside pass of Brack on the last of 140 laps. The result tightened the season point standings, with de Ferran trailing leader Brack by but six points with four races remaining.
"Despite chilly and falling temperatures throughout the race, the Firestone tires performed impeccably today," said Dick Davis, General Manager of Bridgestone/Firestone Racing Product Development. "The tires retained their grip throughout and helped everyone make it a most competitive race, as evidenced by the exciting duel between Gil and Kenny at the end. Most importantly, it was a safe race and now everyone in the CART community can look forward to getting back home to our loved ones."
Gil de Ferran, Team Penske Honda/Reynard/Firestone: "The Firestone tires were great. I got a little loose in the first stint, but after that we made a couple of adjustments and they were real consistent."
Tim Cindric, president, Team Penske: "The first (set of) tires we took off looked really good, looked like we hadn't hardly run at all. So we were planning, had it gone the original race distance, we were going to change them on the second stop and leave them on the next stop and run a stint and a half. The Firestone tires are very durable and consistent throughout the day."
Kenny Brack, Team Rahal Ford/Lola/Firestone: "No problems, no problems, the tires ran good all day."
Race temperatures ranged from 60 to 67 degrees track and from 58 to 66 degrees ambient (F); and from 16 to 19 degrees track and from 14 to 19 degrees ambient (C).
(The highest track and ambient temperatures were recorded at the start of the race, with the lowest track and ambient temperatures recorded at the end of the race.)