Ford-Cosworth Powers Player'S/Forsythe to a front row sweep in qualifying for the Molson Indy Vancouver ALEX TAGLIANI SCORES FIRST CAREER ROAD COURSE CHAMP CAR POLE POSITION - Ford-Cosworth powered Player's/Forsythe drivers Alex Tagliani and ...
Ford-Cosworth Powers Player'S/Forsythe to a front row sweep in qualifying for the Molson Indy Vancouver
ALEX TAGLIANI SCORES FIRST CAREER ROAD COURSE CHAMP CAR POLE POSITION - Ford-Cosworth powered Player's/Forsythe drivers Alex Tagliani and Patrick Carpentier to a sweep of the front two starting positions for the Molson Indy Vancouver during qualifying today on the streets of Vancouver, British Columbia. The fastest driver at the end of practice on Friday, Tagliani lapped the 1.781-mile temporary street circuit in 1 minute, 0.872 seconds to capture his first career road course Champ Car pole position. Right behind Tagliani was his teammate, Carpentier, who will start second after qualifying with a lap of 1 minute, 0.924 seconds. Gil de Ferran qualified third, while Team Rahal driver qualified fourth with his lap of 1 minute, 0.943 seconds. Brack's teammate, Max Papis, who was fourth fastest during this morning's practice, qualified ninth with his lap of 1 minute, 1.668 seconds.
Alex Tagliani's pole position was his first in Champ Cars on a road or street circuit ... Ford Cosworth has now scored seven (7) pole positions this season, the most since scoring 13 in 1995 ... Tagliani becomes the first Ford-powered driver other than Kenny Brack or Max Papis to score a pole position this season.
#33 Player's/Indeck Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 1st - "I'm very happy for my guys because they've been working really hard. The only way to give a big thank you to my guys is with a result and I'm very happy for them today."
HOW BIG AN ADVANTAGE ON A COURSE LIKE THIS IS IT TO HAVE YOUR TEAMMATE [PATRICK CARPENTIER] STARTING ALONGSIDE OF YOU? "I think it's pretty big. Pat and I are working really hard and we have the support of the crew and the engineers. I think if we can work together we'll put the car on the podium tomorrow."
HOW IMPORTANT IS IT TO LEAD YOUR TEAM TO A 1-2 SWEEP AND OCCUPY THE FRONT ROW. "I'm very pleased because the team is working very hard and when we're on track we're trying our best."
WHAT HAS THIS POLE POSITION DONE TO YOUR CONFIDENCE LEVEL? "We are very confident and the atmosphere is relaxed. Every time I approach a race as a driver and I know that the car is good enough to fight for a spot at the front, it's good. This series is so competitive and you never know where you're going to end up. But when you can start from the front that's a result of pure speed and the team deserved that today."
#32 Player's/Indeck Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 2nd
HAT'S IT LIKE TO SWEEP THE FRONT ROW WITH YOUR TEAMMATE IN FRONT OF ALL THESE FANS? "It's great. It's a good show and it couldn't have happened in a better place. We're in Canada on the front row on a street circuit. If we would've said that at the beginning of the season everybody would've started laughing, but this is great."
#8 Shell Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 4th
A BIG IMPROVEMENT ON YOUR STARTING POSITION FROM A YEAR AGO [16TH]. "It was a very good qualifying session for us. We've tried to make the car better and better and the car was at its best during qualifying. The car ran great today and we'll see what happens tomorrow."
HOW IMPORTANT IS IT TO START UPFRONT ON A TIGHT COURSE LIKE THIS? "It's very important because if you're back there you're going to have an awful lot of traffic. Even if you're fast you're not going to get by very easily on a track like this, but if you're already up there it's going to be a huge benefit."
YOU'RE TRALING HELIO CASTRONEVES BY JUST A FEW POINTS IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP. ARE YOU LOOKING TO WIN OR TO JUST CONSISTENLY SCORE POINTS? "I think we're looking to win because in the end the one who's won the most I think will get the championship. Of course if you can't win then you've got to go for the most points, but the main thing now is to tune the car for the race and hopefully we'll have a car that we can win with. If we win, that's great. If we don't, as long as we're in the top three, top four, then that would be great."
#7 Miller Lite Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 9th
WITH THE RAINS OVERNIGHT DID IT WASH AWAY A LOT OF THE GRIP? "No, that's not really the problem. The problem is having the two different qualifying sessions. The 'slow' group is always the people that clean the track off and it's very unfair for us at the moment because it's very difficult to do something good. I was very pleased for the team because we definitely did the best we could out there. The car was very strong, but it's very difficult to clean the track for 20 minutes to give ourselves 10 minutes of 'green' time."
KENNY BRACK'S ENGINEER WAS JUST DOWN HERE. WHAT DID YOU TELL HIM TO HELP KENNY? "I think that Kenny has the car to be in the top two or three. We had the car as well to be in the top two or three, but we're in the wrong session at the moment and we have to work our way out of it. I think that with just a little bit more grip on the track we would be able to be very competitive."
WELL, YOU'VE HAD A PRETTY STRONG CAR ALL WEEKEND. "I feel very comfortable and the car has been running very well. It's always unfortunate with this qualifying situation where the two groups don't go out together and qualify under different conditions. I really don't feel that's something very equal, but we'll do the best that we can. We don't complain and we're going to go out tomorrow and do the best that we can. The first two days of this weekend have been best two days we've had since the beginning of the season and I'm very happy with my guys."
MICHEL JOURDAIN, JR.
#16 Herdez Bettenhausen Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 21st
"Unfortunately this morning we had a problem with the primary car and had to switch to the backup. It's a little different in some places so the things that we learned this morning on the primary car didn't translate to the backup. The first part of qualifying we were experimenting and at the end I think we had a pretty decent car. But I got messed up in traffic when Bryan [Herta] blocked me. He had some sort of problem and was on the line so I had to slow down to avoid him while I had a pretty good lap going. Hopefully tomorrow we can take advantage of the caution situations, try and pass some people and score some points."
#22 Sigma Autosport Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 22nd - I'm not too happy because for sure I wanted to do better than that. It hasn't been an easy weekend so far, but usually when it starts like this it's ended up good. We wanted to start up front here because it's very difficult to overtake, but we'll have to make it happen some other way."