CHAMPCAR/CART: Motegi: Honda Racing qualifying report

Bridgestone Potenza 500 Circuit: Twin Ring Motegi (1.55-mile oval), Motegi, Japan Weather: Partly cloudy, cool, 56-degrees F Kanaan second in Motegi qualifying. Honda-powered drivers claimed two of the top three starting positions today at the...

Bridgestone Potenza 500
Circuit: Twin Ring Motegi (1.55-mile oval), Motegi, Japan
Weather: Partly cloudy, cool, 56-degrees F

Kanaan second in Motegi qualifying.

Honda-powered drivers claimed two of the top three starting positions today at the Honda-owned Twin Ring Motegi oval in Japan in single-car qualifying for Saturday's Bridgestone Potenza 500.

Tony Kanaan led the Honda field and in the end came up just 44-hundredths of a second short of the time recorded by pole qualifier Bruno Junqueira. Just eight-thousandths of a second further back, Paul Tracy rounded out the top three in his first qualifying run using a new Lola chassis rather than the Reynards traditionally employed by Team KOOL Green.

Dario Franchitti, who like Kanaan still runs the Reynard-Honda combination, will start just behind his teammate in fifth position, with Team Motorola's Michael Andretti seventh in another new Lola. The Fernandez Racing duo of Adrian Fernandez and Shinji Nakano will start 14th and 18th as the entire field qualified within 1.04 seconds of Junqueira's pole time.

Highlights of today's qualifying will televised in the United States on Speed Channel Friday, March 26, at 2:00 p.m. EDT and again at 9:30 p.m. EDT. Tomorrow's race starts at 12:30 p.m. local time and will be televised on Speed Channel Saturday, April 27, starting at 12:00 p.m. EDT.

Tony Kanaan (#10 Pioneer/WorldCom Mo Nunn Racing Honda) qualified 2nd: "I think you're going to see a very close race tomorrow, and it's going to come down to the little things that make the difference. Somebody's setup is going to go off a little, someone else is going to have trouble with traffic. It's a long race tomorrow, with a total of five pit stops before the finish. And the track is going to change as the race goes on, too. The guy that keeps up with the track as it changes and doesn't have any problems is going to finish up front, and that's where we want to be."

-honda-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Bruno Junqueira , Adrian Fernandez , Dario Franchitti , Tony Kanaan , Shinji Nakano , Mo Nunn