CHAMPCAR/CART: Milwaukee Saturday Lap Report

Milwaukee: FedEx Championship Series Lap Notes- Saturday, May 30, 1998 Today's CART on-track activities begin with a 75-minute practice session at 9 a.m. followed by the green flag for the 90-minute qualifying session at...

Milwaukee: FedEx Championship Series Lap Notes- Saturday, May 30, 1998

Today's CART on-track activities begin with a 75-minute practice session at 9 a.m. followed by the green flag for the 90-minute qualifying session at 1:15 p.m.

GREEN FLAG waves at 9 a.m. to start the morning session. Firestone engineers report a track temperature of 83 degrees F. and an ambient temperature of 68 degrees F.

YELLOW FLAG waves at 9:03 a.m. after #36 BARRON stalls on the backstretch. CART safety workers tow the car back to the pit area.

At 9:10 a.m., ten minutes into the session and under a full-course caution flag, the fastest driver is #3 RIBEIRO with a lap of 168.597 mph (22.036 seconds), followed by #12 VASSER (164.834 mph; 22.539 seconds), and #16X CASTO-NEVES (164.455 mph; 22.591 seconds).

GREEN FLAG waves at 9:11 a.m. to resume the practice session.

YELLOW FLAG waves at 9:19 a.m. for a track inspection after #36 BARRON loses power on-track and smoke appears at the rear of the car. BARRON immediately pits his car.

GREEN FLAG waves at 9:23 a.m. to resume the practice session.

At 9:30 a.m., 30 minutes into the session, the fastest driver is #6 ANDRETTI with a lap of 180.455 mph (20.588 seconds), followed by #1 ZANARDI (180.087 mph; 20.630 seconds) and #3 RIBEIRO (179.080 mph; 20.746 seconds).

At 9:40 a.m., 40 minutes into the session, the fastest driver is still #6 ANDRETTI with a lap of 180.455 mph (20.588 seconds), followed by #1 ZANARDI (180.437 mph; 20.590 seconds) and #3 RIBEIRO (179.582 mph; 20.582 seconds).

At 9:50 a.m., 50 minutes into the session, the fastest driver is still #6 ANDRETTI with his earlier lap of 180.455 mph (20.588 seconds), followed by the identical times of #1 ZANARDI (180.437 mph; 20.590 seconds) and #17 GUGELMIN (180.437 mph; 20.590 seconds).

YELLOW FLAG waves at 9:59 a.m. after #10 HEARN spins exiting Turn 2 making slight contact against the outside wall with the nose of his car. HEARN is uninjured in the incident and CART safety workers tow the car back to the pit area.

At 10 a.m., 60 minutes into the session and under a full-course caution flag, the fastest driver is #99X MOORE with a lap of 183.141 mph (20.286 seconds), followed by #1 ZANARDI (182.127 mph; 20.399 seconds) and #33X CARPENTIER (180.700 mph; 20.50 seconds).

GREEN FLAG waves at 10:04 a.m. to resume the practice session.

YELLOW FLAG waves at 10:14 a.m. after #5 DE FERRAN makes heavy contact against the outside wall of Turn 4 with the right side of the car. DE FERRAN slides along the wall and comes to a stop on the frontstretch. DE FERRAN exits the car under his own power but the car sustains major damage.

CHECKERED FLAG waves at 10:15 a.m. to end the morning session with #99X MOORE the fastest driver of the session with his earlier lap of 183.141 mph (20.286 seconds), followed by #1 ZANARDI (182.127 mph; 20.399 seconds), #27 FRANCHITTI (181.176 mph; 20.506 seconds), #6X ANDRETTI (180.806 mph; 20.548 seconds), and #33X CARPENTIER (180.700 mph; 20.560 seconds). At the end of the session, the top 28 cars and the top 25 drivers are separated by less than one second in lap times. FedEx Championship drivers introduced 35 cars to The Milwaukee Mile during this session with secondary cars utilized by #99X MOORE, #6X ANDRETTI, #33X CARPENTIER, #20X PRUETT, #11X MORENO, #97X BARRON (in a JONES secondary car), #98X JONES, #10X HEARN, #16X CASTRO-NEVES, and #36X BARRON. CART drivers logged a total of 1603 laps during the session.

GREEN FLAG waves at 1:15 p.m. to start the qualifying session for Sunday's Miller Lite 200. The drivers have up to four warm-up laps before the first of two timed, qualification laps. Firestone engineers report a track temperature of 114 degrees F. and an ambient temperature of 75 degrees F. at the start of the qualifying session.

#34 VITOLO's top speed: 169.892 mph; (21.868 seconds); first lap. YELLOW FLAG waves at 1:22 p.m. after VITOLO's car slides into the fourth turn wall on the second lap, making heavy contact. VITOLO is uninjured in the incident but the car is destroyed.

#21 KANAAN's top speed: 175.552 mph; (21.163 seconds); second lap.

#77 MEIER's top speed: 177.557 mph; (20.924 seconds); second lap.

#36 BARRON's top speed: no speed. YELLOW FLAG waves after BARRON loses power with a gearbox problem and stalls in Turn 2 after smoke appears at the back of the car.

#40 FERNANDEZ's top speed: 177.032 mph; (20.986 seconds); second lap.

#19 JOURDAIN JR.'s top speed: 176.402 mph; (21.061 seconds); second lap.

#98 JONES's top speed: 177.134 mph; (20.974 seconds); second lap.

#11X MORENO's top speed: 178.384 mph; (20.827 seconds); second lap.

#16 CASTRO-NEVESsecond lap.

#25 PAPIS's top speed: 177.905 mph; (20.883 seconds); second lap.

#10 HEARN's top speed: 176.999 mph; (20.990 seconds); second lap.

# 7 RAHAL's top speed: 179.922 mph; (20.649 seconds); first lap.

#24 GORDON's top speed: 179.262 mph; (20.725 seconds); second lap.

#20 PRUETT's top speed: 179.800 mph; (20.663 seconds); second lap.

# 8 HERTA's top speed: 177.489 mph; (20.932 seconds); second lap.

# 9 LEHTO's top speed: 181.610 mph; (20.457 seconds); second lap.

#12 VASSER's top speed: 183.385 mph; (20.259 seconds); second lap.

#18 BLUNDELL's top speed: 178.153 mph; (20.854 seconds); first lap.

# 3 RIBEIRO's top speed: 184.487 mph; (20.138 seconds); second lap. This represents a new track record of 184.286 mph (20.160 seconds) for The Milwaukee Mile set in 1997 by Paul Tracy.

# 5X DE FERRAN's top speed: 179.383 mph; (20.711 seconds); first lap.

# 2 UNSER JR.'s top speed: 181.663 mph; (20.451 seconds); second lap.

#26 TRACY's top speed: 179.608 mph; (20.685 seconds); second lap.

#17 GUGELMIN's top speed: 180.938 mph: (20.533 seconds); second lap.

#33X CARPENTIER's top speed: 185.500 mph; (20.028 seconds); second lap. This lap represents a new track record, breaking RIBEIRO's time.

# 6 ANDRETTI's top speed: 184.057 mph; (20.185 seconds); second lap.

#27 FRANCHITTI's top speed: 182.064 mph; (20.406 seconds); second lap.

# 1 ZANARDI's top speed: 181.459 mph; (20.474 seconds); second lap.

#99 MOORE's top speed: 184.817 mph; (20.102 seconds); second lap.

#36 BARRON's top speed: (second attempt) No Speed. BARRON pulls from the track on his first warm-up lap with smoke trailing from the rear of the car.

PATRICK CARPENTIER wins the pole for Sunday's Miller Lite 200. This is CARPENTIER's second career pole; his first being Nazareth of this year. CARPENTIER has qualified fourth or better in all four career starts on one-mile ovals. In 1997, CARPENTIER qualified third at Nazareth, and fourth at Milwaukee and in 1998 he has poles at both Nazareth and Milwaukee.

GREG MOORE will start second tomorrow. This is MOORE's fourth front-row start in seven events this season. In the last 13 oval starts, the average starting position is 4.1 with 10 of the 13 starts in the top five positions.

This is the second time that the Player's/Indeck Forsythe Racing Team has filled the front row of the grid in 1998

ANDRE RIBEIRO is third on the grid for tomorrow's race. This is RIBEIRO's second-best start of the season; his best was at Homestead. In four Milwaukee appearances, this is also his best start. RIBEIRO previously had stated fifth in 1995.

The top three qualifiers today broke Paul Tracy's existing track record of 184.286 mph (20.160 seconds). The top 24 drivers are separated by less than one second in lap times on the starting grid. Nine different drivers held the provisional pole during the qualifying session before CARPENTIER locked down the honor.

GREEN FLAG waves at 3 p.m. to start a special 20-minute practice session for the FedEx Championship Series drivers.

At 3:05 p.m., five minutes into the session, the fastest driver is #6 ANDRETTI with a lap of 173.187 mph (21.452 seconds), followed by #20 PRUETT (170.853 mph; 21.745 seconds) and #2 UNSER JR. (170.767 mph; 21.756 seconds).

At 3:10 p.m., ten minutes into the session, the fastest driver is #3 RIBEIRO with a lap of 177.024 mph (20.987 seconds), followed by #6 ANDRETTI (174.431 mph; 21.299 seconds) and #10 HEARN (173.648 mph; 21.395 seconds).

At 3:15 p.m., 15 minutes into the session, the fastest driver is still #3 RIBEIRO with his earlier lap of 177.024 mph (20.987 seconds), followed by #20 PRUETT (175.701 mph; 21.145 seconds and #26 TRACY (175.518 mph; 21.156 seconds).

CHECKERED FLAG waves at 3:20 p.m. with the fastest driver #26 TRACY with a lap of 178.518 mph (20.804 seconds), followed by #3 RIBEIRO (177.024 mph; 21.145 seconds) and #20 PRUETT (175.701 mph; 21.145 seconds). There were 21 drivers of the 24 drivers that took to the track within one second of the fastest time set by TRACY. The FedEx Championship drivers logged 559 laps during this session.

PATRICK CARPENTIER, Player's/Indeck Reynard Mercedes: "We struggled a bit yesterday, so we switched cars for today and it was so much better. My engineer [Lee Dykstra] made some changes [for qualifying] and the car was even better than it was this morning. I just had to drive it; it was hooked up at the front and rear. If you can get the pole, you try anything you can to do it. You want your teammate to be up there, but you want him to be second. So far, we haven't been able to back it [good qualifying performances] up in the race, because we've had so much bad luck. But we've got 200 laps to do tomorrow with full tanks and tire changes in changing weather conditions; I'm sure we'll be ready."

GREG MOORE, Player's/Indeck Reynard Mercedes: "We went out yesterday in the backup car and in six laps we did a 21.5 (second lap). Then we went out in the primary car and it took us more than 20 laps to get down to 21.5. I went to my engineer [Steve Challis] and said 'Let's change cars.' This has been a good car for us, we won at Rio, finished second at Miami and third last weekend [at Gateway] in this car. We decided that if we were going to defend our championship as the race winner, we should do it in this car."

ANDRE RIBEIRO, Marlboro Penske Mercedes: "We were concentrating on long runs both yesterday and this morning. We did not worry too much about qualifying. This track is so unique; the most important thing is to have good balance for the race. To be honest, I was not expecting this big a jump [from practice to qualifying speed]. It's really unbelievable the difference a few miles per hour and a few tenths makes. I really believe we are headed in the right direction. I believe this car will be competitive in the very near future. We had a fantastic car in St. Louis, unfortunately, because we had only one practice session, we started near the back. This shows the potential that we do have. I really believe that we will be progressing very well from now on. This series is so competitive that if you are off even a little bit, it makes a huge difference."

MARK BLUNDELL has a bit of a basketball war going on the sides of his car this weekend for the Miller Lite 200. On the left side is a "Go Bulls!" logo, expressing the support of the car's sponsors, Chicago-based Motorola. But on the right side of the car the logo reads, "Go Pacers!"; expressing the wishes of the Indianapolis-based PacWest Racing Team. Though a tie is impossible in the NBA, hopefully, neither side of BLUNDELL's crosses the finish line ahead of the other in tomorrow's Miller Lite 200!

PPG Industries, Inc. is pleased to announce that Carl Haas, co-owner of Newman-Haas Racing, has become the latest PPG Colorful Character. Haas, with 11 championships in the last two decades, has been called "one of the most powerful men in the history" of auto racing by USA Today. "Carl Haas believes in speaking softly and carrying a big cigar," said Mike Sack, PPG's Director of Sports Marketing. "Carl brings colorful and exciting teams to every PPG Cup event. We are delighted to recognize Carl as our newest PPG Colorful Character.

Source: CART Online

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Paul Tracy , Carl Haas