CHAMPCAR/CART: Surfers Paradise: Bridgestone race report

Dominguez claims first CART victory in downpour down under. Mario Dominguez parlayed the right pit strategy call into the first victory of his CART FedEx Championship Series, in rain-drenched Surfers Paradise. Showers fell throughout the event,...

Dominguez claims first CART victory in downpour down under.

Mario Dominguez parlayed the right pit strategy call into the first victory of his CART FedEx Championship Series, in rain-drenched Surfers Paradise. Showers fell throughout the event, with only six laps run under green-flag conditions.

Dominguez made his final pit stop on lap 22, his Herdez Competition crew calculating that the race might end by the time limit rule before he would be forced to stop again 20 laps later under the CART pit interval statute. Teams saw the red and checkered flags waved simultaneously at the completion of the 40th lap.

Regardless of the conditions for the win, series rookie Dominguez was overjoyed with the results.

"I am elated because the team did a great job," Dominguez said. "I think they all deserve it. They put the car back together after the first-lap accident (and subsequent red flag). I just feel like the luckiest man alive right now. All the bad luck we've had this year just turned around at this moment. It's unbelievable."

All 18 cars in the Honda Indy 300 race were equipped by Bridgestone, which entered competition this season and serves as the Official Tire of CART.

Quote from Al Speyer, Executive Director, Bridgestone Motorsport: "Our congratulations go to Mario Dominguez and the entire Herdez team, who worked tremendously hard to earn their milestone first victory today. Following two days of picture-perfect conditions, race day could not have turned more miserable. From the consistent rains to the first-lap accident, this just was not a day for racing in paradise. We cannot remember a race where the conditions were so poor as to allow just six laps of green-flag racing. We remember a lot of great races and times in Surfers Paradise, but we're really disappointed for the fans today. The rain, cool conditions and darkness combined to eliminate any chance of staging a proper race. We look forward to the entire CART community returning to Australia next year to make it up to the fans."

Race temperatures ranged from 62 to 66 degrees track and from 62 to 66 degrees ambient (F).

Race temperatures ranged from 17 to 19 degrees track and from 17 to 19 degrees ambient (C).

-bridgestone-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Mario Dominguez