CHAMPCAR/CART: Mexico City: Rocketsports Racing Saturday report

October 11, 2003, Mexico City, Mexico -- Rocketsports' driver Alex Tagliani, had another challenging day of qualifying for the Grand Premio Telmex/Gigante Presented by Banamex/Visa in Mexico City. Tagliani and crew struggled to improve the ...

October 11, 2003, Mexico City, Mexico -- Rocketsports' driver Alex Tagliani, had another challenging day of qualifying for the Grand Premio Telmex/Gigante Presented by Banamex/Visa in Mexico City. Tagliani and crew struggled to improve the performance of the No. 33 Johnson Controls Lola at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez. In addition to battling with the set up, a broken differential banished Tagliani to 15th position in the session with a time of 1:30.383 (110.968 mph, 178.585 km/h). Friday's qualifying time of 1:29.882 (111.586 mph, 179.580 km/h) boosted Tagliani to 13th position on the starting grid for tomorrow's race.

"We've been struggling to get the car right all weekend," said an exasperated Tagliani. "It was slow in the straightaway and we were losing time there, so we made some changes to try to get more speed of the car. We worked on the roll center, springs and differential. During qualifying we went back and adjusted some changes we made in morning practice and lost some time. When I did get out there the car felt better, but then the differential broke," explained Tagliani.

"It's frustrating to keep running out of time and watch the guys work so hard with little return. They stayed late last night to do an engine change and they have been going hard all day. Starting from 13th tomorrow is going to be tough, but I'll do my best for the team," concluded Tagliani.

Position on grid, based on overall qualifying results: 13th

Saturday qualifying: 15th with a time of 1:30.383 (110.968 mph, 178.585 km/h)

Friday qualifying: 10th with a time of 1:29.882 (111.586 mph, 179.580 km/h)

Tagliani/Mexico City Fast Facts

Tagliani is currently ninth in the Champ Car World Series standings with 91 points

He has two poles and three podiums among his ten top-ten finishes for the first year Rocketsports team.

With 75 career starts in four years of Champ Car racing, Tagliani has earned 15 top-five finishes and 38 top-ten finishes, including three career-best second place podiums

In 2002 in Mexico City, Tagliani qualified with a time of 1:27.437, started 14th, and finished 10th

Race Details: 70 laps on the 2.786 mile road course, for a total race distance of 203.378 miles, with a maximum 19 - lap interval for pit stops

Grand Premio Telmex/Gigante Presented by Banamex/Visa Broadcast

Sunday, October 12, pre-race show and race on SPEED 3:30 -- 6:30 p.m. (ET)

and Fox Sports Espanol at 4:00 pm (ET)

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Series IndyCar