German 500 Pre-Race Quoteboard PAUL TRACY ( ...
German 500 Pre-Race Quoteboard
PAUL TRACY (#3 Player's/Indeck Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): "One of the great features of the Champ Car World Series is its diversity, where drivers have to from the challenges of a road course to an oval or a superspeedway. I guess it's quite fitting that our first oval race of the season is in Lausitz, because that's an oval that ranks right up there as the best in the world. When I did some karting in Germany about 20 years ago, I never thought at the time I'd be back some day, going about 200 miles an hour on the Lausitz superspeedway. When I raced there two years ago in the inaugural event, it was quite a thrill, especially with the grandstands filled with passionate racing fans. I was disappointed that I wasn't able to do better than a 10th place finish, so I'm looking for better things this time. I'm sure it's going to be very emotional, especially with Alex Zanardi being on hand. It will be great to see him. All good things have to come to an end sometime, and that's the way I look at the end of our three-race winning streak. Over the course of a long season, you're going to have some good luck and bad, and the important thing is to try to limit the bad days to a bare minimum. I've already put the Brands Hatch race out of mind, and the fact that Team Player's is going to be racing again in just a few days means that we all have to quickly focus our attention on the next race. It's going to especially tough on the technical crew, switching from a road course to a superspeedway in a matter of a few days, but I'm sure that Team Player's is up to the task."
BRUNO JUNQUEIRA (#1 PacifiCare Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): "It was good to finish on the podium again at Brands Hatch but the PacifiCare team is really working hard to win some races this season. Paul has already won some races and I know Michel (Jourdain) will probably win some so we need to win as many and even more than them to fight for the Championship. Podium finishes are great but we need to win some in order to get ahead of Paul. We made a compromise for the combined aerodynamic package for the two races since one was on a road course and one was on an oval and were happy to be so competitive in Brands Hatch. Hopefully we will be as competitive or even more this weekend in Germany."
MICHEL JOURDAIN (#9 Gigante Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): "Team Rahal has been one of the more dominant teams in the series over the last five years on these tracks. The team has a great feeling for what they need to do to get the car ready to be successful. It is a great feeling to go to the track and know that you will have a car that will be among the fastest on the track."
PATRICK CARPENTIER (#32 Player's/Indeck Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): "Going from the short Brands Hatch road circuit to the EuroSpeedway at Lausitz is going to be quite a change of pace, that's for sure. I expect the speeds to be a bit slower than they were when we raced in Lausitz two years ago, because of the regulation that we have to basically keep the same aerodynamics package that we had for the road course in Brands Hatch. It's going to come down to whatever tweaks and adjustments crews can make and what kind of drafting a driver can do during the race. It's going to be fun. I've always enjoyed racing on superspeedways. I got my first career win in the series on the superspeedway in Michigan and I made it on the podium with a third-place finish when we had our first race in Lausitz in 2001. It's really going to be something special in Lausitz. I'm sure Alex Zanardi's presence is going to be inspirational for every driver."
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS (#2 Lilly Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): ""I'm looking forward to the new challenge of racing on an oval. I tested for two days in Phoenix and it was quite an eye-opening experience. I watched the oval races on TV but I didn't fully appreciate the skill needed until I did it for myself. Before I thought 'Wow, how hard can it be?' But it is a real test of ability and it's definitely mentally challenging. You don't know where the limit of the car or yourself is but you don't want to have a big moment. It requires 110 percent concentration 110 percent of the time. I'm looking forward to this new challenge. It was great to win a race after a few lost opportunities to do it sooner. The feeling was unbelievable. Everyone on the Lilly team was really happy about this accomplishment. It was good to get that behind us and earn some points in the Championship and move up to sixth place."
MARIO DOMINGUEZ (#55 Herdez Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): "The last month has been very good for us - we ran well in Long Beach, had a good test in Portland, and an excellent result in England last week. I think the team is on a bit of a roll at the moment and everyone, including me, is more motivated than ever. I think we have the real possibility of a podium again this weekend at EuroSpeedway Lausitz. It is a very impressive racetrack. Everything looks like it has been very well done - I think this might be my new favorite track!"
ROBERTO MORENO (#4 Herdez Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): "First I want to say how glad I am that Alex Zanardi is going to be here at the German 500 this weekend. His attitude and determination to come back and finish his race are awesome. For myself, I'm excited to come back here again. I raced here in 2001 and then I also came over in 2002 to do some coaching with some Formula 3 drivers who were going to be driving on ovals. This is a beautiful facility and I'm looking forward to our first oval of the season. I've always admired (Chief Engineer) Tom Brown's way of setting up an oval car. I'm looking forward to having the opportunity for him set up my car this weekend."
ALEX TAGLIANI (#33 Johnson Controls Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): "I am confident in the Rocketsports team and Paul Gentilozzi. I see my return to Lausitz as a new experience with my new team. For the German 500, we will try to set the car up based on what we already know of the track and past performances, but we must keep the same basic package we used at Brands Hatch. We can make changes on site during our practice sessions to respond to the track and conditions, which will be fairly different from England."
MARIO HABERFELD (#34 Mi-Jack Conquest Ford-Cosworth/Reynard/Bridgestone): "I'm looking forward to my first oval race. I think our first oval test was a good experience I enjoyed it a lot. I think we can do good here. It's important to score points, and I think the Reynards will be competitive on this circuit so we can do that. I would like to finish in the top 10, but I will be happy to finish as I am still learning how to race on the ovals."
ORIOL SERVIA (#20 Visteon/Patrick Racing Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone): "I think the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team is in very good shape heading into the German 500. We have some momentum after our fourth place finish at Brands Hatch, but, the most important thing is that we ran a low downforce setup in England. The rules we are using in Europe for these two races require you to use the same setup in Germany that you used in England. The low downforce setup we used at Brands Hatch should benefit us on the EuroSpeedway oval where it will be key to getting the maximum speed out of the #20 Visteon/Patrick Racing car."
DARREN MANNING (#15 RAC/Walker Racing Ford-Cosworth/Reynard/Bridgestone): "With having to run the same specifications that we qualified with at Brands Hatch, it's going to make these cars easier to drive on the ovals. It's going to make for a fantastic race for the fans because the field is going to be really tight. We'll be looking for hundredths and thousandths, not tenths, to improve our position."
TIAGO MONTEIRO (#7 Fittipaldi-Dingman Racing Ford-Cosworth/Reynard/Bridgestone): "I am very excited to be in Germany for the German 500. As a European driver, its nice to be racing in Europe again. This will be my first time in racing on an oval and I can't wait to get out on the track."
RODOLFO LAVIN (#5 Corona Competition Team Ford-Cosworth/Reynard/Bridgestone): "I'm looking forward to my first oval races in Champ Cars. I've always enjoyed the ovals and have had some good runs on them in Toyota Atlantics over the last couple of years. We had a very productive test at Homestead in April specifically to prepare for this race and it gave me the chance to run several hundred miles on an oval in a Champ Car before arriving in Germany."