CHAMPCAR/CART: Road America Mercedes-Benz provisional qualifying notes

Mauricio Gugelmin led the five-car Mercedes-Benz contingent in provisional qualifying today for the Motorola 220 at the 4.048-mile Road America circuit at Elkhart Lake, Wis., earning the seventh spot on the grid thanks to a lap of 1:41.044 ...

Mauricio Gugelmin led the five-car Mercedes-Benz contingent in provisional qualifying today for the Motorola 220 at the 4.048-mile Road America circuit at Elkhart Lake, Wis., earning the seventh spot on the grid thanks to a lap of 1:41.044 seconds (144.222 mph). The provisional pole sitter is Gil de Ferran, who turned in a 1:40.392-second lap (145.159 mph).

Gugelmin was prevented from improving his time in the closing minutes of the session when Paul Tracy spun on course and brought out the red flag, ending qualifying despite the fact that approximately four minutes were remaining on the clock.

"I had an even better lap going when Tracy spun," said Gugelmin, who drives the Nextel/PacWest Racing/Mercedes. "I still don't have the balance that I like. It has a push and is loose, but the goal was to get into the fast group for qualifying tomorrow, and we have done that."

Mechanical problems hindered the progress of Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing/ Mercedes driver Tony Kanaan, who managed a 1:42.504-second lap (142.168 mph) for the 18th spot in the field. He had run as high as fourth before being forced to pit so his engineers could attempt to diagnose the problem, but he was unable to return to the track before time ran out.

Mark Blundell, driver of the Motorola/PacWest Racing/Mercedes, had a mechanical problem in the morning practice, and was 10th in the afternoon qualifying with a lap of 1:42.657 seconds (141.956 mph). Herdez/Bettenhausen Motorsports/ Mercedes driver Michel Jourdain Jr. was 23rd, with a 1:44.366-second lap (139.632 mph). Luiz Garcia Jr., who drives the Hollywood/Arciero Project Racing/Mercedes, was 24th with a lap of 1:45.731 seconds (137.829 mph).

Practice continues tomorrow at 10 a.m. (11 p.m. Eastern), and final qualifying will begin at 1:45 p.m. local time (2:45 p.m. Eastern).

<pre> Provisional Qualifying, Motorola 220 Road America, Elkhart Lake, Wis. Aug. 18, 2000

Pos.    Driver                  Engine          Time        Speed
1       Gil de Ferran           Honda           1:40.392    145.159
2       Michael Andretti        Ford            1:40.401    145.146
3       Dario Franchitti        Honda           1:40.477    145.036
4       Alexandre Tagliani      Ford            1:40.482    145.029
5       Adrian Fernandez        Ford            1:40.581    144.886
6       Christian Fittipaldi    Ford            1:41.016    144.262
7       Mauricio Gugelmin       Mercedes-Benz   1:41.044    144.222
8       Helio Castroneves       Honda           1:41.072    144.182
9       Kenny Brack             Ford            1:41.358    143.776
10      Juan Montoya            Toyota          1:41.431    143.672
18      Tony Kanaan             Mercedes-Benz   1:42.504    142.168
20      Mark Blundell           Mercedes-Benz   1:42.657    141.956
23      Michel Jourdain Jr.     Mercedes-Benz   1:44.366    139.632
24      Luiz Garcia Jr.         Mercedes-Benz   1:45.731    137.829

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Gil de Ferran , Michael Andretti , Adrian Fernandez , Christian Fittipaldi , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Tony Kanaan , Mauricio Gugelmin , Kenny Brack , Mark Blundell , Michel Jourdain , Luiz Garcia , Mo Nunn