CHAMPCAR/CART: Long Beach: Team Target preview

What: Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, round two of the 20-race CART FedEx Championship Series. When: Sunday, April 14. Broadcast: 3:30 p.m. Eastern live on FOX. Broadcast live on CART Radio Network affiliates. Coverage of practice, qualifying...

What: Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, round two of the 20-race CART FedEx Championship Series.

When: Sunday, April 14. Broadcast: 3:30 p.m. Eastern live on FOX. Broadcast live on CART Radio Network affiliates. Coverage of practice, qualifying and the race is also live on Qualifying --- Friday, April 12 and Saturday, April 13.

Where: The 1.968-mile temporary street course in Long Beach, Calif.

History: Team Target has won 4 out of the last 6 races held in Long Beach.

Fast Facts:

Kenny Brack won 4 races, 6 poles and led 621 laps last season. These were season-highs in the three categories.

Team Target has captured 38 career victories.

Team Target has scored at least one championship point in eleven of the last twelve races.

Bruno Junqueira captured his first career victory last season at Road America.

Team Target won 34 of the 92 CART FedEx Series events from 1996 through 2000.

Team Target has claimed four CART FedEx Series championships (1996-1999) and won the Indianapolis 500 in 2000.

Team Target drivers have claimed 32 of the 112 pole positions since 1996.

For the sixth straight season, Target Chip Ganassi Racing is raising money for Target House at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital by donating $5,000 for victories, $1,000 for pole positions and $25 for each lap led. The team has donated more than $240,000 since 1997.


Brack and Junqueira take to the streets of Long Beach

Target Chip Ganassi Racing drivers Kenny Brack and Bruno Junqueira are looking to continue a winning tradition this weekend in the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. Since 1996, Team Target has compiled a stellar record on the 1.968-mile street course, winning four out of the last six races held in Long Beach.

The team's first victory on the streets of Long Beach came in 1996 when Jimmy Vasser took the checkered flag on his way to the team's first CART championship. Alex Zanardi captured the 1997 and 1998 races en route to his back-to-back championships. In 1999, a little known rookie named Juan Montoya driving in his first street course race, crossed the finish line first giving Team Target four straight victories in Long Beach. Montoya also went on to win the CART championship that year, the fourth in a row for Target Chip Ganassi Racing.

The pilot of the No. 12 Target Toyota/Lola/Bridgestone, Kenny Brack, is confident that the team can capture another victory in Long Beach.

"I qualified second last year in Long Beach and it's a track that I feel that we can do well on," Brack said. "I had a gearbox problem last year and wasn't able to finish the race. With the success that Team Target has had in Long Beach, I have a lot of confidence heading into this week's race. We've done some testing in preparation for this race and the car was really good. The Toyota engine has been bulletproof in testing so far this year, that's been a real benefit for us. We have been able to turn a lot of laps in testing, which is crucial when the testing days are limited. If we can unload with a good setup on the car, I think we have a great chance to win."

After experiencing problems in qualifying, second-year pilot Bruno Junqueira started in 28th place last year in Long Beach. However, he would not remain there for long. Junqueira overcame his last place starting position and a flat tire as he carved his way through the field to an impressive 9th place finish. The 25-year old Brazilian is looking forward to returning to the streets of Long Beach this year.

"I think Long Beach will be a good race for us," Junqueira said. "I had a good race last year even though I started in last place. We had a problem in qualifying last year and we weren't able to get in a fast timed lap. I started 28th and was able to make it all the way up to 9th by the end of the race. My team gave me great pit stops and I had a fast car. This year the car is better and has a better balance. Both Toyota and Lola have worked very hard over the winter and we have a great car right now. I'm really looking forward to going back there this year. We ran really well at the street courses last year and I really feel that we have a good chance to win the first race of the year this weekend."

The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach can be seen live on FOX with the green flag to be waving at 3:30pm EST.


Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jimmy Vasser , Bruno Junqueira , Alex Zanardi , Kenny Brack , Chip Ganassi
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing