CHAMPCAR/CART: Lola Nazareth race notes

"I'd like to win one, at least one" CART FedEx Championship Series race, said Kenny Brack, who has started on the front row for every Champ Car race in the 2001 season. During the Lehigh Valley Grand Prix presented by Toyota, Brack did all he...

"I'd like to win one, at least one" CART FedEx Championship Series race, said Kenny Brack, who has started on the front row for every Champ Car race in the 2001 season. During the Lehigh Valley Grand Prix presented by Toyota, Brack did all he could to beat Scott Dixon in his #8 Shell Lola/Ford, but had to settle for second place, leading the most laps (125) in the 225-lap competition around Nazareth Speedway's .946-mile oval.

"To pass here, it takes great risk," said the Swede, winner of the 1999 Indy 500. "Scott was better from turns two and three, but I was better all around. I was just a little loose at the end of the race, but it wasn't a problem. He didn't make a mistake and there wasn't any traffic at the end to bog him down. We'll go on to the next one."

Christian Fittipaldi drove a gutsy race to take fifth place in the #11 Blue Light Special Lola/Toyota of Newman-Haas Racing. He began the contest in 17th spot (of 25 starters), moving up through the field. Fittipaldi admitted, "It was good to salvage some points. The fueler had a problem getting the single-probe fueling system into the car, and we came out of our first stop in 16th place." CART-mandated single-probe refueling rigs became mandatory at this race and caused delays for many drivers.

Polesitter Bruno Junqueira had an exciting afternoon, despite never leading a green-flag lap. He achieved a seventh-place finish in the #4 Team Target Lola/Toyota. "We had a very good car today. I lost the radio contact during the race and I was not able to hear anything they were telling me. That was a big factor in our finish today. I also made a lot of mistakes and I will learn from those errors and become a better and better oval racer," said the Brazilian rookie. Junqueira fell as far back as 18th.

Oriol Servia's quest for the podium took a detour at Nazareth Speedway. He finished ninth in the #22 Sigma Autosport Lola/Ford, despite hounding leader Brack during the early and middle stints. "I think all of the cars were pretty close to one another," said the Spaniard, the 1999 Dayton Indy Lights Champion. "I don't think our strategy was bad today, but it just didn't work our way. The Lola was pretty good in the first half, but later, it became very difficult to pass. These things happen," he shrugged.

Points leader Cristiano da Matta now has to share top spot with Paul Tracy, thanks to his tenth-place finish in the #6 Texaco/Havoline/Kmart Lola/Toyota. "My car was pretty good today, better than it was for qualifying. I was quite impressed in the morning warmup and in the race," he said. "Your car had to be much better than the next guy's car if you planned to pass him on this track. The yellows just didn't fall the right way for us."

-Lola

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Bruno Junqueira , Christian Fittipaldi , Paul Tracy , Scott Dixon , Oriol Servia , Kenny Brack , Cristiano da Matta