CHAMPCAR/CART: Gugelmin returns to Mid-Ohio

(Indianapolis, In) -- PacWest Racing's Mauricio Gugelmin will return to "where it all began" this weekend when he competes in the 13th round of the FedEx Championship Series at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, in Lexington, Ohio. Gugelmin, ...

(Indianapolis, In) -- PacWest Racing's Mauricio Gugelmin will return to "where it all began" this weekend when he competes in the 13th round of the FedEx Championship Series at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, in Lexington, Ohio.

Gugelmin, driver of the #17 Nextel PacWest Mercedes-Benz, had his first ever Champ Car start at the picturesque road course with Dick Simon Racing back in 1993 and has not missed a race since.

This weekend's race will be his 121st consecutive start in the series -- the longest continuous streak of any active driver in the 2000 championship.

Gugelmin, who is now chairman of the Championship Drivers Association (CDA) and one of the most respected drivers in the series, ran the last three races of the '93 season before joining Chip Ganassi Racing the following year.

In 1995 he was signed by Bruce McCaw's PacWest Racing Group and he has been with the Indianapolis-based team ever since. Al Unser Jr holds the record for the most consecutive starts ever with 192 -- he achieved this from the opening round of the 1983 season until he failed to qualify for the1995 Indy 500.

This weekend will be Gugelmin's 102nd start for the team and he will be coming off his second best result of the season when he finished seventh in the Target Grand Prix of Chicago on July 30.

This weekend's race will be the first of four consecutive road/street course events after recent oval races in Michigan and Chicago.

Gugelmin and his PacWest Racing teammate Mark Blundell, driver of the #18 Motorola PacWest Mercedes-Benz, are looking forward to this weekend's race after a successful test at the Ohio venue back in June.

"It will be nice to get back to a string of road courses," said Gugelmin.

"I am looking forward to turning right as well as left for a change.

"Mid-Ohio is a terrific race track with a challenging layout. We had a good test there earlier in the year and look forward to taking that data back to the race.

"The first race I ever did in the United States was at Mid-Ohio with Dick Simon back in '93. We have certainly come a long way since then."

Gugelmin is hoping for a better result than he achieved in his first race at Mid-Ohio back in '93 when he qualified an impressive 12th on debut, but dropped out of contention on lap 62 of the 89-lapper and finished 21st with a broken header.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Mauricio Gugelmin , Mark Blundell , Chip Ganassi , Bruce McCaw , Dick Simon , Al Unser
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing