Team Player's Paul Tracy and Patrick Carpentier in the top five at Road America. Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, July 31, 2003 The qualifying session may have lasted an hour, but Team Player's driver Paul Tracy saved the fast for last, as he qualified...
Team Player's Paul Tracy and Patrick Carpentier in the top five at Road America.
Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, July 31, 2003 The qualifying session may have lasted an hour, but Team Player's driver Paul Tracy saved the fast for last, as he qualified third in the provisional qualifying session for the Mario Andretti Grand Prix at Road American in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Bruno Junquiera took the provisional pole, followed by Sebastien Bourdais.
Paul Tracy's fast lap time of one minute, 44.725 seconds (223.945 km/hour) came just minutes before the chequered flag was waved on a bright sunny afternoon in Wisconsin. The Canadian driver was a scant 0.003 seconds off Bourdais' time of one minute, 44.722 seconds (223.951 km/hour). Despite a last lap attempt to shave seconds, Tracy was unable to beat Junquiera's top time of one minute, 43.917 seconds (225.686 km/hour). Team Player's Patrick Carpentier qualified fifth with his best time of one minute, 44.814 seconds (223.754 km/hour) barely one-tenth of a second of Tracy's time.
"I flat spotted my front tires on my first quick lap and the car had a lot of vibrations after that," observed Tracy, a two-time champ at Road America who currently leads the standings in the Champ Car World Series. "The car also had too much under-steer, pushing just about everywhere. The second set was better as I cut two seconds off my previous time. Team Player's needs to improve the speed at some corners, find the right balance between the front and the rear as we are a little bit off. I started to run out of fuel on my last lap so I was unable to score a quick one. We'll do better in the second qualifying," said Tracy. A win on Sunday would not only make it a Road America three-peat for Tracy, but would also give him nine victories this season, a career high for the Canadian driver.
Patrick Carpentier's spot on the third row is proof that appearances can be deceiving. He may have qualified fifth, but he's certainly not far off the front row time.
"Except for Bruno (Junqueira) who is ahead by a bit, we are all bunched up," noted Patrick Carpentier. "I'm fifth, but it's a good fifth place time wise. Team Player's made some changes prior to qualifying and I found that we had fewer problems with the power transmitting to the rear wheels during qualifying. I would run a very good section, and then I was unable to back it up in the second one and vice-versa. The car is running fine and Team Player's just needs to make some small adjustments to make it better for Saturday. I'm very confident we will improve our position for the race."
Racing fans can follow Team Player's progress at the Mario Andretti Grand Prix at Road America throughout the weekend by logging on to the team's website at www.teamplayers.ca. They can also watch a tape delay of the race on The Sports Network at 7:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.