CHAMPCAR/CART: Las Vegas: Bridgestone qualifying report

Bourdais Donates Bridgestone Pole Award Bonus to Relief Fund Sebastien Bourdais never gives an inch on the racetrack. His 2004 Champ Car World Series championship and his fifth pole position of the 2005 season -- won late this afternoon by a...

Bourdais Donates Bridgestone Pole Award Bonus to Relief Fund

Sebastien Bourdais never gives an inch on the racetrack. His 2004 Champ Car World Series championship and his fifth pole position of the 2005 season -- won late this afternoon by a mere 0.007 of a second over teammate Oriol Servia -- are proof of that.

But the Newman/Haas Racing driver showed his true generous form after collecting the Bridgestone Pole Award for a series-leading fifth time this year. Bourdais announced he would donate the $5,000 prize that comes with the Pole Award to the American Red Cross hurricane relief effort that is the theme of this weekend's event at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Bourdais' benevolent offer is on top of the $2,500 Bridgestone is directing toward the relief effort via the charitable element of the Pole Award. At each Champ Car race in 2005, Bridgestone gives $2,500 in honor of the pole winner to the Hole in the Wall Camps and another $2,500 to a local charity. The American Red Cross' hurricane relief effort is the designated local charity this weekend, and with another storm bearing down on the Gulf Coast this weekend, the funds are needed more than ever.

"We want to commend Sebastien on winning the pole today and thank him for showing the true champion he is by donating his monetary prize to the relief effort," said Joe Barbieri, Manager of Bridgestone Motorsport. "Everyone in the Champ Car paddock is aware of the incredibly difficult situation those in the Gulf Coast region are facing. Even though we're all at a race here, our thoughts are with them and we're doing whatever we can to help. Sebastien's generous gift is a perfect example."

On the track, Bourdais clocked a lap of 26.381 seconds, or 204.693, mph to capture the pole in the McDonald's Ford-Cosworth/Lola. The 26-year-old Frenchman had no qualms pushing the accelerator to the floor because he knew his Bridgestone Potenza tires would allow him to do so.

"The Bridgestone tires are really consistent and there are no worries," Bourdais said. "They don't give up at all and they have plenty enough grip to put the pedal to the metal. It's very satisfying."

Qualifying session temperatures ranged from 96 to 103 degrees track and from 90 to 91 degrees ambient (F).

Qualifying session temperatures ranged from 36 to 39 degrees track and from 32 to 33 degrees ambient (C).

-bridgestone-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Oriol Servia , Sébastien Bourdais