CHAMPCAR/CART: Laguna Seca: Patrick Racing preview

Visteon/Patrick Racing's Oriol Servia seeks to stretch streaks at Grand Prix of Monterey. JACKSON, MI - - JUNE 10, 2003 - - Round 7 - - 2003 CART World Series, presented by Bridgestone and powered by Ford - Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol ...

Visteon/Patrick Racing's Oriol Servia seeks to stretch streaks at Grand Prix of Monterey.

JACKSON, MI - - JUNE 10, 2003 - - Round 7 - - 2003 CART World Series, presented by Bridgestone and powered by Ford - Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol Servia will be seeking to stretch several streaks and move further into the championship hunt at this weekend's Grand Prix of Monterey at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California.

Servia, pilot of the #20 Visteon/Patrick Racing entry, which is powered by Ford-Cosworth and uses a Lola chassis with Bridgestone tires, is coming off a thrilling race in Milwaukee that featured several side-by-side duels with Paul Tracy. At the end, the 28-year-old native of Spain emerged with a CART career best second place finish giving him a career high three consecutive top-five showings. Servia, who was 62 points out of first place and 18th in the championship standings with just two points prior to the back-to-back-to back top-five performances, has vaulted 11 positions in the standings and currently sits in seventh place with 40 points. He is just 13 points out of fourth place and 37 out of first.

In addition to the three straight top-five finishes the talented resident of Miami, Florida has placed in the points in four consecutive races, one short of his CART career high, and five of the six events this year. He has qualified in the top-ten a CART career best six consecutive times.

"The Visteon/Patrick Racing Team has had three good results in a row, which has put us back in the hunt for the championship," Servia said. "The engineering staff led by Steve Challis has consistently given me a good car and the crew has done a fantastic job. It is still very early in the season, so we cannot relax. We have to keep working hard and continue to produce top finishes," he noted.

Servia will be making his third start at Laguna Seca. He qualified 10th and finished 17th in 2000 and started 21st and placed 17th in 2001.

"Laguna Seca is a track I like very much," Servia began. "I have always enjoyed racing there because the track is very challenging and fun to drive. The Visteon/Patrick Racing Team did its first test with the Lola in the winter at Laguna Seca. Since then we have developed our setup and are much more competitive, so I am looking forward to a good race," he concluded.

Servia, who has campaigned with four different teams over his four-year CART career, will be making his 60th career start and 17th for Visteon/Patrick Racing. In 59 CART events he has earned 26 top-ten finishes including nine top-five showings (second, Milwaukee - 2003; third, Detroit - 2000; fourth, Rockingham - 2002, Brands Hatch - 2003; fifth, St. Louis - 2000, Vancouver and Germany - 2001, Fontana - 2002, Germany - 2003) with two podium performances. However, it has been with Visteon/Patrick Racing over the last two years that Servia has shown he can be consistently competitive and has the ability to challenge for wins in the CART series. In his 16 starts with the team he has finished in the points ten times with six top-10 finishes and five top-five showings (second, Milwaukee - 2003;fourth, Brands Hatch - 2003, Rockingham - 2002; fifth, Fontana - 2002, Germany - 2003).

Patrick Racing will be making its 26th start at Laguna Seca. In 25 previous events the team has qualified in the top-10 a total of 16 times. There highest starting position is third in 1983 by Chip Ganassi and 1997 with Scott Pruett. They have finished in the top-10 a total of 15 times with a best showing of third again by Ganassi in 1983 and Pruett, but in 1996.

The Grand Prix of Monterrey will be televised live on CBS on Sunday, June 15 at 3:30 PM (ET). Speed Channel will show a delayed qualifying show on Saturday, June 14 at 5:30 PM (ET).

For background, statistical information, releases, notes, quotes plus updates on race weekends, go to (www.patrickracing.com).

-pr-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Paul Tracy , Oriol Servia , Scott Pruett , Chip Ganassi