Disappointing end for Fernandez in Miami Adrian Fernandez looked poised for victory this afternoon but contact by another driver knocked Fernandez out of the lead on the downtown Miami street circuit. Fernandez, who started on pole and led 88...
Disappointing end for Fernandez in Miami
Adrian Fernandez looked poised for victory this afternoon but contact by another driver knocked Fernandez out of the lead on the downtown Miami street circuit. Fernandez, who started on pole and led 88 laps total at the Grand Prix Americas Presented by Sportsbook.com, was hit from behind by Bruno Junqueira as Junqueira was passing a backmarker on Lap 93 of the 135-lap race. Both drivers were eventually restarted after spinning, but the incident dropped Fernandez a lap down. Fernandez, who set the fastest lap of the race, finished eighth.
The Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford will head to Fernandez's hometown of Mexico City next for the Gran Premio Telmex/Gigante on October 12.
Adrian Fernandez, Owner/Driver -- #51 Tecate/Quaker State/Telmex Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone:
"It was just a bad mistake on Bruno's part. It cost him big time and cost me big time. That was unfortunate because we both were having a great race. It was a hard race physically and we were pushing hard. On our side, we had a great car, great pit stops -- everything was perfect. For the conditions, with the weather and the humidity, it was really physically hard; one of the hardest races I can remember. It's unfortunate that the rewards are not there at the end of the day for the perfect job that everybody did.
"Other than the result, the weekend in general was good for us heading into Mexico City. We had an extremely good car and this will really help us. The morale on the team is good even though we had a bad result. We know we can do it. I haven't been in this situation for a long time and that's why it is hard not to get the result."
This was his 176th Champ Car career start-- started ninth at Miami last year and finished seventh-- best 2003 street course start was pole in Miami today; best finish was second in Long Beach-- recorded 10 top-10 finishes in 16 rounds of 2003 competition to date-- currently sits eighth in the championship with 99 points-- enters his 11th season of Champ Car competition with eight career wins and four pole positions-- 40 years old from Mexico City-- formed Fernandez Racing in the fall of 2000 with Tom Anderson-- only competing owner/driver in the series-- is the third most-winning driver in the current Champ Car field-- ranked ninth in CART all-time career starts-- has 21 Champ Car career podiums to his credit-- last win was at Portland on June 22.
Tom Anderson, Co-Owner/Managing Director:
"It was just one of those days where you did everything right and it still didn't work out. Adrian had a fantastic drive. The car was good -- the engineering department did a fantastic job with the Tecate/Quaker State/Telmex car. The crew had great pit stops. It was a beautiful day until the driver behind us got a little impatient and threw a lot of it away for not only himself but us as well. It's just unfortunate, but fortunately no one was injured. A few prides were broken but sometimes that's racing. It just wasn't our day."