CHAMPCAR/CART: Portland Firestone qualifying wrap-up

Championship Auto Racing Teams Series Freightliner/G.I. Joe's 200 Presented By Texico Portland International Raceway Saturday, June 23, 2001 Papis Takes Pole At Portland Team Rahal driver Max Papis went out in the first qualifying group today...

Championship Auto Racing Teams Series
Freightliner/G.I. Joe's 200 Presented By Texico
Portland International Raceway
Saturday, June 23, 2001

Papis Takes Pole At Portland

Team Rahal driver Max Papis went out in the first qualifying group today and set a standard no other driver could match, earning the pole for Sunday's Freightliner/G.I. Joe's 200 presented by Texaco. Although his speed of 122.669 mph (0:57.785 seconds) was the target to beat for drivers in group two, none was able to bump him from the first-place starting position. Cristiano da Matta was second and Helio Castroneves third. Within minutes after the checkered waved ending the session, Papis was surrounded by a group of drivers, including Alex Zanardi, Tony Kanaan and Dario Franchitti, who came to his pits to revel in his emotional accomplishment. Pointing to his heart, he said "I have it in here; it always has been."

Quote from Joe Barbieri, Bridgestone/Firestone Motorsports Project Supervisor:

"We congratulate Max and the whole Rahal Miller Lite team for their outstanding work today. Max had a superb qualifying run, and we were proud to be a part of that effort. We have been very pleased with the tire wear we've seen during practice and qualifying. Normally during the first sessions for a race weekend, some teams can run through quite a bit of rubber as they experiment with their set-ups. The cooler temperatures Friday and this morning were certainly factors in the reduction. Another element contributing to the good wear is the fact teams used this construction and compound Firehawk in Monterrey (Mexico) earlier this year - so they were familiar with its characteristics. That allowed them to concentrate on other variables to tune their cars. And finally, the tread compound for this event is somewhat harder than what we've used in the past. That not only provides increased durability, but helps to reduce marbles, giving drivers improved opportunities for passing or running different race lines around this tough course."

Quote from Pole Winner Max Papis (Team Rahal):

"Today was great proof for the Miller team. We've come through some difficult times but no one ever gave up. We believed in ourselves, we believed in the Ford engine and we believed in Firestone. They supported us all the time. I have fire in my heart; Mad Max is here!" <pre> Temperature Information: Time: Ambient: Track: 1:45 p.m. 78° 108° 2:30 p.m. 76 ° 111°

-Firestone Racing

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Max Papis , Dario Franchitti , Alex Zanardi , Tony Kanaan , Cristiano da Matta