CHAMPCAR/CART: Patrick Racing set for start of 2003 season

Visteon/Patrick Racing set for start of 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford season. JACKSON, MI - - FEBRUARY 13, 2003 - - Visteon/Patrick Racing concluded it preseason testing last Friday on the road course at ...

Visteon/Patrick Racing set for start of 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford season.

JACKSON, MI - - FEBRUARY 13, 2003 - - Visteon/Patrick Racing concluded it preseason testing last Friday on the road course at Homestead Speedway in Homestead, Florida and pronounced itself ready to contest the 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford season.

Driver Oriol Servia, in the #20 Visteon/Patrick Racing entry, which is powered by Ford-Cosworth with a Lola chassis and Bridgestone tires, focused on long runs and simulated race conditions during the one-day test.

"The Visteon/Patrick Racing Team got a lot of work done during our test in Homestead, " Servia said. "The test went very well. We did a lot of long runs and the car ran flawlessly. The team spent some time working on race conditions and we did some additional work with the brakes," he noted.

Servia went on to say, "I am very pleased to have been able to get in all the testing we did during the preseason. It gave me an opportunity to work with the new car and engineer Steve Challis. I have been very impressed with the level of communication Steve and I have developed. In fact, the whole Visteon/Patrick Racing Engineering department has been fantastic and I want to thank the crew for doing such a great job preparing the car. I am very confident heading into the start of the season and I am confident that the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team will have good results and contend for the championship."

Visteon/Patrick Racing General Manager, Jim McGee said, "The fact that the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team ran two different types of race tracks in our final preseason tests was good for the team and the driver. Although they are both road courses, Sebring has a lot of grip while Homestead is more like the streets of St. Petersburg where there will be limited grip. The data we acquired and the experienced we gained was very beneficial for the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team. We practiced a lot of pit stops and the team seems to be coming together very well. The 2003 Champ Car World Series season will be very competitive, but we feel we are well prepared and have the proper equipment to contend for the championship."

Next up for Visteon/Patrick Racing is the season opening inaugural Grand Prix of St. Petersburg February 21-23 in St. Petersburg, Florida.

PATRICK RACING NOTES:

Oriol Servia:

Servia is entering his fourth Champ Car season and second with Visteon/Patrick Racing. He ran the first three races of the 2002 season with PacWest Racing before joining Visteon/Patrick Racing for the final ten events of the season. The 28-year-old native of Pals, Catalonia, Spain finished in the points in eight of the 13 races he contested and five of ten with Visteon/Patrick Racing. He had six top-ten showings, four coming with Visteon/Patrick Racing including two top-five performances (fifth at Fontana and a season high fourth at Rockingham). The resident of Miami, Florida placed 16th in the championship standings with 44 points. In 53 career Champ Car starts, Servia has earned 23 top-ten finishes including six top-five showings and one podium (third, Detroit - 2000; fourth, Rockingham - 2002; fifth, Fontana - 2002; Vancouver and Germany in 2001; St. Louis - 2000).

McGee Holds Record For Most Wins:

Patrick Racing General Manager Jim McGee is the most successful Manager/Chief Mechanic in Champ Car history. He has 89 victories including four at the Indianapolis 500 and nine national championships. McGee is the only Manager/Chief Mechanic to win a championship in four decades (60's - 90's). He has at least one victory in each of his last five decades (his 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's, 60's) and a least one victory in each of the last five decades (60's-00).

Patrick Racing Facts:

Patrick Racing enters its 31st year of competition in 2003 as one of the most successful teams in Champ Car history. Patrick drivers have started 769 races, earning 45 victories including three Indianapolis 500 titles and two national championships (1976 - Gordon Johncock and 1989 - Emerson Fittipaldi). U. E. "Pat" Patrick is the co-founder of CART.

For background, statistical information, releases, notes, quotes plus updates on race weekends, go to (www.patrickracing.com).

-ppr-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Oriol Servia , Gordon Johncock
Teams Racing Engineering