CHAMPCAR/CART: Long Beach Ford Racing Sunday notes and quotes

HERTA FINISHES 10TH IN GRAND PRIX OF LONG BEACH - Zakspeed/Forsythe driver Bryan Herta scored his first top 10 finish of the season with a 10th place result in the Grand Prix of Long Beach. Polesitter Helio Castroneves won his first race of the ...

HERTA FINISHES 10TH IN GRAND PRIX OF LONG BEACH - Zakspeed/Forsythe driver Bryan Herta scored his first top 10 finish of the season with a 10th place result in the Grand Prix of Long Beach. Polesitter Helio Castroneves won his first race of the season, followed by Cristiano da Matta, Gil de Ferran, Paul Tracy and Jimmy Vasser. Herdez Bettenhausen driver Michel Jourdain, Jr., who qualified seventh, finished 13th, while Ford-Cosworth's other top finishers included Oriol Servia (14th) and Michael Krumm (15th).

CARPENTIER BREAKS WRIST - Player's/Forsythe driver Patrick Carpentier suffered a broken left wrist following contact with Team Rahal driver Max Papis on Lap 53. Although this is the same wrist that he broke during a fall in his home last season, it was not broken in the same place. The full extent of the injury is not yet known, although it is not as severe as last year's break.

Quotes:

BRYAN HERTA (#22 Zakspeed/Forsythe Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 10th
"I'm happy we finished. Not a great result, but for our second race we finished on the lead lap, scored a few points and I think we learned some things about the car today that hopefully will help for the next street course. I had just a little too much understeer, but we really had a funky weekend and it seemed like we were in the wrong place at the wrong time up until the race, so at least we got something positive out of it. I'm pleased that everything ran really competitively. Our lap times were competitive, but we just weren't fast enough to get there. If we could've been in the top five I think we would've stayed there for sure, so I take a little bit of comfort in that."

ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO RUNNING AT TEXAS?
"Yeah. We have a long break again, three weeks I think, so I'll go home and relax a little bit, do some training and get ready for that one. We didn't test there so we'll see. I know it's going to be fast and I know reliability is going to be a key because there's a lot of wide open throttle and it's a long race, so that's probably the two things we're going to focus on."

MICHEL JOURDAIN, JR. (#16 Herdez Bettenhausen Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 13th
"The car was very, very good and everything went really well. We passed Dario (Franchitti) early in the race and we were running well while saving fuel. When I came in for the second pit stop I got a penalty for speeding. I slowed down and made sure I stayed on the speed limiter and my dash said 48 or 49 (MPH), but CART said I was doing 51. It's hard for the team, you know, because they did a great job.

ORIOL SERVIA (#22 Sigma Autosport Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 14th
WHAT WAS YOUR PIT STRATEGY TODAY? YOU ONLY TOOK FUEL ON YOUR FIRST STOP.
"That was a little bit risky because I did almost 50 laps on one set of tires and at the end I was all over the place, and I mean I was really, really on the edge, but we gained a few positions with that."

MAX PAPIS (#7 Miller Lite Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 17th
"The car was fast and our lap times were competitive with the lap leaders, so if we had been able to start near the front I'm sure that we would've been able to stay there. I'm encouraged because for the first time I feel like we're understanding the Lola chassis and I think we're making good progress."

WHAT HAPPENED IN THE INCIDENT BETWEEN YOU AND PATRICK?
"I was running along when I looked in my mirror and saw that my rear wing was gone. I feel badly, but I didn't know that I made contact with anyone."

ALEX TAGLIANI (#33 Player's/Forsythe Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 18th
"I'm really pleased with the package we have, particularly the engine. It was fast and competitive all weekend long, and we showed that we are competitive. We had a good car and had a chance for the podium, but Paul Tracy punctured my tire when he hit me from behind in the fountain corner and destroyed our race. I'm pretty upset and disappointed that CART didn't take any action against him for hitting me. That's not the way you need to drive to pass people, and if I start doing that I'm going to get penalized, but I'm pleased with how the car and engine performed today. I think we have a chance to be successful this year, but we need to have some better luck."

WHAT EXACTLY HAPPENED WITH YOU AND TRACY?
"Everybody was in single file going into the fountain turn and I when I turned he flat out pushed me out of the way. His nose hit my rear and gave me a flat tire which pretty much ruined the rest of our day."

PATRICK CARPENTIER (#32 Player's/Forsythe Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 22nd
"At the pit exit I thought that (Max) Papis was going slow and was sure that there was something wrong with his car, so when I tried to pass him he suddenly turned into me. I'm very upset with him, but I'm absolutely sure that I want to be back in the car for Texas. I don't want to miss any races like I did last year."

KENNY BRACK (#8 Team Rahal Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 25th
"I left the pits and nothing happened - there was just a little bit of resistance but that was it. I tried to get back rolling and I stalled it, but it was gone long before that."

WAS YOUR PIT STOP THE FIRST TIME YOU NOTICED A PROBLEM OR WAS THERE ANY EARLIER INDICATIONS?
"The car was getting a little loose in Turn 9, but with tire wear I didn't anticipate any gearbox problems. Even when I came in it was okay but I think when I left it snapped something and it broke. I guess that's the way it goes."

-Ford Racing

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Gil de Ferran , Jimmy Vasser , Patrick Carpentier , Paul Tracy , Oriol Servia , Michael Krumm , Bryan Herta , Cristiano da Matta
Teams Team Zakspeed