CHAMPCAR/CART: Portland: Saturday quoteboard

Bruno Junqueira ...

Bruno Junqueira #2 Newman/Haas Racing Ford-Cosworth/Bridgestone/Lola -- "I'm very happy for myself and for the whole Newman/Haas team. It's been a difficult two years so far. Yesterday it was very difficult. We were very much off the pace. I got the help of Sebastien and his team. We changed the setup a lot towards his setup. The car was much better this morning. Then we tried to improve a little bit more. My first run was good, but I knew that the car still had a little bit of understeer. I did some changes. The second run, my first flying lap was 7.9. I said I knew that 7.7 was the pole. I said I'm 2/10ths off of it. I really pushed everything, took all the risks. The lap was great. Ran a 7.6. I was quite happy with that. Very happy because the next one supposed to be the last one, I couldn't make turn 12 very well. I lost 2/10ths there. I said no way that I can recover. I'm quite happy with the result to be on the pole after long time. After my accident, it's the first time I'm on the pole, so I'm quite happy with that. Very happy the work the whole Newman/Haas team did for me, especially after a very difficult weekend in Milwaukee, very difficult day yesterday. Very nice to came here, rebound, come off with the pole."

A.J. Allmendinger #7 INDECK Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone -- "I think it was good. Forsythe this whole weekend has been fantastic. Right out of the box, they've given me a good car. We just kind of slowly worked on it and fine tuned it. This morning we were the quickest. As we saw the times were really close. Going into qualifying, I think we all knew it was kind of just going to be up in the air for whoever could go in to get pole. Taking the gamble yesterday with going on the reds to get pole, we knew that was going to be a little disadvantage today because we weren't going to have two red tires. So, we ran a set of blacks. We were actually fairly quick on the black set of tires in the first run. Kind of had to take a guess at the reds the second run. The car was pretty good. I don't think I got everything out of it because I caught a little bit of traffic on the last couple laps. But, you know, I guess I took it at the end yesterday. I probably deserve to have it taken away from me today in the last lap. Congratulations to Bruno because I think he's probably had the most difficult year so far and he deserved it. Congratulations to him. I think we have a good car tomorrow to go race."

Sebastien Bourdais #1 McDonald's Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone -- "Well, we were fifteen-thousandths short. That's about as close as I can remember any qualifying session I ever did. I'm very happy for Bruno. I think he's been through an extremely rough time. It's good to see him back up there. The whole Newman/Haas team did its best to bring the whole thing together. I think we have a great package once again, both the McDonald's car and the Hole in the Wall Camp car are both performing very well. I think it's a perfect setup for us for the race. We'll see how it goes. Historically we've had extremely good cars on long runs. I'm fairly confident with our chances to fight for the win once again. It's a tough one. I think anything can happen tomorrow with the windows the way they are and everything. We'll see where we're at the end of the race. You could see another da Matta win from P10 or P15. So we'll see what happens."

Justin Wilson #9 CDW Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone -- "Today was a lot better than yesterday. The balance of the car is much closer to what we need, so we've made progress. I think we've got a reasonable starting position. We still need a little bit more rear stability, but the CDW Car #9 team is working hard, and I'm sure we'll work it out."

Cristiano da Matta #10 RuSPORT Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone -- "I'm happy with the result. Of course, the first weekend with a new team isn't always easy, and there are a lot of things to learn. We went back-and-forth with the car setup and the car build, yesterday and today, and I think we've finally got it. Our best session was qualifying, and while we train for our best session to be the race itself, we have some time to do that for tomorrow. But we were at our best so far in qualifying, so there's obviously a trend of improvement, and I think we'll keep getting better."

Dan Clarke #14 CTE Racing-HVM Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "I'm happy with my qualifying performance today - sixth place is a good track position for the start. I am pleased to be top rookie, and to be mixing it with the more experienced Champ Car boys. I'm ahead of some of the favorites too -- Tracy, Philippe and Tagliani. We might be starting near the front, on the third row, but we still need to be sensible -- it's a long race and we need to make sure we go the distance. I'm looking to stay within the top six tomorrow and bring home plenty of points."

Will Power #5 Aussie Vineyards Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "We definitely had better luck in this qualifying session than in this morning's practice because we didn't get a lot of running time in due to some problems we were having with the suspension, but going into this afternoon we knew where the car was going to be. On the first set of tires we had a bit of an under steer problem, but my engineer Brandon (Fry) did a good job of sorting it out because he always does. The car did pretty well on red tires; it was well balanced, so seventh is a good starting position for us and for tomorrow's race."

Nelson Philippe #4 CTE Racing-HVM Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "I think that it's a great team effort overall, we brought both cars well into the top ten. I am sure Keith is going to be happy with this and now we need to bring it home the same way for the race. I have mixed emotions on qualifying today. I know I have a very good racecar for tomorrow and I know that we are much faster than P8. I think I could have easily been in the top five if there wasn't so much traffic. Overall I think that we're in good shape for tomorrow and we're looking for a definite top five finish."

Alex Tagliani #15 Aussie Vineyards Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone -- "Today we struggled a lot with the car and it's very unfortunate because we have been doing well this weekend. I'm really disappointed about the whole thing; it's not where we want to be. Right now the car is not where we want it, so it's very frustrating because this is a place where we were quick last year and this year we are struggling with it. At the moment we just have to go back work hard and get the car better for tomorrow's race."

Paul Tracy #3 INDECK Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "I just couldn't go any faster, I mean I thought that we had improved the car from yesterday, and it felt better, but we just didn't have the speed at all. The overall problem was the balance, I would go into the corner and it would push and then get loose then push again, we just couldn't carry enough speed through all the long corners here in Portland. This is definitely not what we need right now, hopefully tomorrow we'll be able to have a safe race and score some points. It's going to be a long race, and because of the way the fuel windows work here depending on what happens on the start we might be able to get creative with our strategy and try to win the race."

Nicky Pastorelli #8 Bavaria City Racing/Rocketsports Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "The balance was much better on the #8 Bavaria City Racing/Rocketsports car this afternoon. We were faster during qualifying on the Bridgestone Potenza Red Tires, which had more grip and also helped improve the overall balance of the car. We are getting very close to were we want to be. We have done a lot of work, and I want to thank the Rocketsports team for all their efforts. I think that we have a good car for the race tomorrow. I feel pretty positive about the race and feel that we can get a top-ten finish this weekend. It is going to be a very interesting and very long race, so we will have to wait and see what will happen, plan some good race-strategy and I think everything will come together when it counts the most -- during the race."

Oriol Servia #6 Gulfstream Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "The Gulfstream -- PKV Racing team was hoping for a miracle after the setback we had this morning, but it just wasn't the day for miracles. Qualifying 12th is, obviously, not what we wanted, but last year PKV Racing won this race starting 10th, so we can still have a good race tomorrow if we improve the car. The other thing is the fuel windows are very big for this race, so you can use a lot of different pit strategies and that could work in our favor. The main thing is to continue to work on this car, the third car of the weekend, make it better and we will be fine in the race."

Andrew Ranger #27 Mi-Jack Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone -- "This morning in the practice session we were eighth and the car was getting better and better. Unfortunately by the time the qualifying session had started the weather had changed and the car was just not handling the same. We were one tenth quicker than this morning but everybody else went much quicker so it pushed us to 13th on the grid. Sunday is another day and I know that we will do better tomorrow."

Mario Dominguez #19 Sonny's Bar-B-Q Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "Today was pretty good for the Sonny's Bar-B-Q car. Yesterday we had a lot of understeer and today we were able to get rid of some of it so we are making progress. Being new with a team is tough because it takes time for me and my engineer to get to know what each other is thinking and what changes we can make to get the car better. With the progress we showed from yesterday to today you can tell we are starting to work better together."

Katherine Legge #20 Bell Micro Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "The Bell Micro -- PKV Racing team is disappointed. What makes it more disappointing is that we had such a good car at the test here in April. We thought it would be the same this weekend and it is not. The whole team has worked very hard this weekend, but we still have a lot of work to do. We are going to have to sit down and figure out the right direction to go with the car. The good news is we have a practice tonight, so we have a chance to make the changes we need. Then we can come back stronger in the race tomorrow."

Charles Zwolsman #34 Mi-Jack Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "We made some progress since this morning and the car was feeling pretty good. We were quicker than yesterday, but so was everybody else so it did not really pay off. We will continue to work hard and hopefully we can do better in the race tomorrow."

Tonis Kasemets #18 Flexovit Abrasives/Rocketsports Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone - "We are making small improvements. I think that things are still going ok and according to plan. The Rocketsports team and I would like to be faster, but we are still searching for what I like (with the car) and I am still searching for the limits of the #18 Flexovit Abrasives/Rocketsports car. We have to be realistic, this is my first race weekend and there is a lot that has to be learned and that is exactly what we are doing. We will keep working on making changes to suit my driving style and hope to gain some more speed in warm-up, then we will see what we can do in the race."

-cc

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Justin Wilson , Bruno Junqueira , Alex Tagliani , Paul Tracy , Oriol Servia , Mario Dominguez , Sébastien Bourdais , A.J. Allmendinger , Katherine Legge , Nelson Philippe , Andrew Ranger , Charles Zwolsman , Will Power , Tonis Kasemets , Nicky Pastorelli , Cristiano da Matta , Dan Clarke