TOP TEN START TO LONG BEACH WEEKEND FOR RSPORTS LONG BEACH, California (April 13, 2007) -- It may be Friday the 13th, but the fabled bad luck that this day potentially carries did not lie within the RSPORTS garage as Alex Tagliani and Justin ...
TOP TEN START TO LONG BEACH WEEKEND FOR RSPORTS
LONG BEACH, California (April 13, 2007) -- It may be Friday the 13th, but the fabled bad luck that this day potentially carries did not lie within the RSPORTS garage as Alex Tagliani and Justin Wilson round out the top ten in the first day on the streets of Long Beach, California.
Tagliani pulled a top-five effort from the minute he laid rubber on the 1.968-mile temporary street course in Southern California. This morning he had an impressive showing by sitting fifth quickest during the first practice session after logging his best time of 1:09.756 (101.565 mph).
Teammate Justin Wilson, who is coming off a tough weekend in Las Vegas, showed his potential by running eighth fastest during the morning practice, posting a quick time of 1:09.984 (101.235 mph).
Satisfied with their cars, the duo anxiously headed out for the first round of qualifying for Round 2 of the Champ Car World Series this afternoon. During the 15-minute pre-qualifying practice session, Tagliani finished second, while Wilson sat seventh.
Tagliani and the #8 RSPORTS crew opted not to put the Bridgestone Option Tires on the car this afternoon, so they have two fresh sets to run during final qualifying tomorrow. It is proven that when running on these tires, the drivers are able to post even quicker times, so the potential of starting in front two rows for the #8 LXN2 Cosworth/DP01/Bridgstone runs high. The Montreal-native posted his fastest time of the day with a 1:08.304 (103.725 mph) on his 11th orbit of provisional qualifying.
Wilson had some issues arise that hindered his potential of posting better times and a better overall position in the first round of qualifying. The Englishman was running some good laps at the start with the #9 CDW Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone, but was held up with traffic. Then after heading out for his second stint, an electrical problem brought him back into the pits before he could make his final laps. Wilson was able to record a 1:09.553 (101.862 mph) on his final lap out of seven ran in the first round of qualifying, which placed him tenth overall.
Wilson, too, opted to save both sets of the Red Bridgestone tires for tomorrow, as both drivers hope to take advantage of these tires in an effort to improve their overall lap time and position for a higher spot up on the final grid tomorrow.
Alex Tagliani #8 LNX2 Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone
"I am really happy with the #8 LXN2 car. The crew did a fantastic job getting it ready from Las Vegas to Long Beach. We have a better understanding of a lot of things, so that has brought us closer to the front runners. We had little issues on braking, but overall there were no major problems today. I am happy with how the car feels, and we just have to take little baby steps on fine tuning it as we try to make it better. I think that we will be even closer to tomorrow. We have two sets of Red (Option Tires) Bridgestone Potenza tires for the final round of qualifying, so I think realistically we could have been in the top three today if we would have put those tires on, therefore we should be in good shape for tomorrow."
Justin Wilson #9 CDW Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone
"I am very disappointed. I felt that the #9 CDW car was quicker then our showing today. We were quick earlier in the qualifying session, and from our data it showed that we would have been in the top three on our second timed laps during provisional qualifying. But we just kept getting blocked and we were just not able to get in a good lap this afternoon to post a better first qualifying time. So, I am very pleased with the potential, but disappointed that we could not get a clear lap today. I think that we are off to a good start and should have a good day tomorrow."