CHAMPCAR/CART: Lausitz: Walker Racing preview

Mexican rookie Rodolfo Lavin prepares to make his Champ Car oval debut this weekend in his ...

Mexican rookie Rodolfo Lavin prepares to make his Champ Car oval debut this weekend in his #5 Corona Competition machine on the 2.023-mile EuroSpeedway Lausitz oval while teammate Darren Manning looks to improve on his impressive oval debut at last year's Rockingham race. Manning posted a ninth place finish in his Champ Car debut where the hometown crowd also saw the young British talent lead four laps. In 2002, Manning won on the EuroSpeedway oval contesting an ASCAR race, his sole previous start on the circuit. Both drivers are settling into their rookie rides with the veteran Walker Racing team and hope to benefit from the team's sixth place finish at the inaugural German 500 in 2001.

Rodolfo Lavin (R), #5 Corona Competition Team Ford-Cosworth XFE-Reynard-Bridgestone

"I'm looking forward to my first oval race 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."

Fast Facts: Will be his fifth Champ Car start, Marks first Champ Car oval race, Best Champ Car finish to date is 15th earned at the Monterrey Grand Prix (23 March) and matched at the last event, The London Champ Car Trophy (5 May)

Darren Manning (R), #15 Ford-Cosworth XFE-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, of a second to improve our times. We've worked really hard on the Reynard for the Brands Hatch/EuroSpeedway set-up, putting a lot of time in on wind tunnel testing. I think that will pay off for us and we should be quick straight away."

Fast Facts: Will be his sixth Champ Car start and fifth with Walker Racing, Won last year's ASCAR race at EuroSpeedway, sole previous start at this circuit, Marks his second oval start after making Champ Car debut at Rockingham oval in 2002, Posted new career-best start at Monday's London Champ Car Trophy qualifying eighth, Career-best finish to-date is seventh place earned at Monterrey Grand Prix (23 March), Has collected four top-ten finishes in five starts, Currently 13th in the drivers' championship and third in the Rookie of the Year battle

Walker Racing

In 2001, Walker Racing driver Tora Takagi collected a sixth place finish in the inaugural German 500 event after qualifying 26th. The team has 304 starts coming into the German 500. Walker Racing has four Champ Car victories, 26 podium finishes and ten pole positions.

Broadcast: Qualifying for the German 500 will air on SPEED Saturday, 10 May at 4:00 p.m. Eastern with CBS broadcasting the race on Sunday, 11 May at 1:00 p.m. Eastern. Also this weekend, the London Champ Car Trophy will air on CBS Saturday, 10 May at 1:00 p.m. Eastern.

- WR -

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Darren Manning , Tora Takagi , Rodolfo Lavin