CHAMPCAR/CART: Toronto: Ford Racing preview

Ford Racing CART Race ...

Ford Racing CART Race #8
Molson Indy Toronto - Exhibition Place - Toronto, Ontario, Canada

WHEN: July 5-7, 2002
TRACK LAYOUT: 1.755-mile temporary street course
RACE DISTANCE: 112 laps [196.56 miles]
TELEVISION COVERAGE [ET]: CBS; 1:30pm [LIVE]

DEFENDING CHAMPION: Michael Andretti
DEFENDING POLESITTER: Gil de Ferran [57.703 seconds; 109.492 miles per hour]
QUALIFYING RECORD: Gil de Ferran - 1999 [57.143 seconds; 110.565 miles per hour]

2002 DRIVER POINTS: Cristiano da Matta [95], Bruno Junquiera [70], Dario Franchitti [64], MICHEL JOURDAIN, JR. [57], Christian Fittipaldi [43]

2002 MANUFACTURER POINTS: Toyota [131], Honda [106], FORD-COSWORTH [85]

ALEX TAGLIANI LOOKS TO CAPTURE HIS FIRST CHAMP CAR VICTORY IN THIS WEEKEND'S MOLSON INDY TORONTO - Player's/Forsythe driver Alex Tagliani heads to Toronto for this weekend's Molson Indy Toronto hoping to improve on his runner-up finish from a year ago. Tagliani, who currently sits ninth in the championship with 36 points, was a force to contend with in both Canadian races last season. After qualifying fifth and finishing a career-best second in Toronto, Tagliani followed up that effort by capturing pole position in Vancouver and was pulling away from the field before mechanical gremlins sidelined him 30 laps from the finish.

FORD-COSWORTH AT TORONTO - Since the Molson Indy Toronto debuted in 1986, Ford and Cosworth have combined to score two pole positions [Robby Gordon, '94; Jacques Villeneuve, '95] and six victories on the temporary street course. Michael Andretti is by far Ford-Cosworth's winningest driver on the streets of Toronto with victories coming in 1992, '94, '95 and 2000 [also won in 2001]. Other Ford-Cosworth winners include Bobby Rahal, who won the inaugural Molson Indy Toronto in 1986, and Adrian Fernandez, who was victorious in 1996.

FORD-COSWORTH DRIVER NOTES -

Patrick Carpentier - Started seventh last weekend in Chicago, but was sidelined 48 laps into the race when an inlet valve broke. Qualified 20th and finished 19th earlier this season on the streets of Long Beach. Has not enjoyed a great deal of success in five previous starts at Toronto with just one top 10 finish [seventh, '00], and he has never qualified better than 12th [twice, in 1999 and 2001]. Has scored top-10 finishes this season in Mexico [seventh], Japan [fourth], Laguna Seca [fifth] and Portland [fifth], and currently sits seventh in the championship standings with 38 points.

Mario Dominguez - Qualified 15th in Chicago and finished 11th to score championship points for the second consecutive race. Made his first points-paying finish of the season in Japan where he came home 11th [two points]. Currently second in the Jim Trueman Rookie of the Year standings behind Townsend Bell [19 points].

Michel Jourdain, Jr. - Scored his seventh consecutive top-10 finish in last weekend's CART Grand Prix of Chicago[10th], but slipped to fourth in the championship standings. Has finished 10th or better in all seven races this season, including fourth in Mexico, fifth in Long Beach, Japan and Milwaukee, ninth in Laguna Seca, sixth in Portland and 10th in Chicago. Has not experienced a great deal of success at Toronto with just one finish coming in the top 15 [13th as a rookie in 1996].

Max Papis - Will not run this weekend in Toronto because of financial difficulties experienced by his team, Sigma Autosport.

Alex Tagliani - Captured outside pole position last weekend in Chicago, but only finished seventh after being spun out by Paul Tracy. Currently ninth in the championship standings with 38 points. Has posted five top-10 finishes in the last nine races dating back to his runner-up performance in Australia last year. Has two top-five results in two career starts at Toronto, qualifying 19th and finishing fifth as a rookie in 2000 before qualifying fifth and finishing second last year. Qualified 11th and finished 16th on the streets of Long Beach earlier this season.

Jimmy Vasser - Started 10th in Chicago but was taken out in the first turn of the first lap by Kenny Brack and has now finished just three of the seven races contested this season [Long Beach - second, Milwaukee - eighth, and Laguna Seca - ninth]. Currently 14th in the championship standings with 26 points. Has five top-10 finishes, including one top-five finish, in 10 career starts at Toronto, all coming in consecutive seasons between 1996 and 2000. Best career result was third in 1998, but has also finished seventh [1997], eighth [1996 and '99], and ninth [2000]. Captured the pole position and finished second on the streets of Long Beach earlier this season.

COSWORTH RACING CHAMP CAR WINS - Max Papis' third career Champ Car victory at Laguna Seca on October 14, 2001 was the 212th victory for Cosworth Racing in USAC- and CART-sanctioned races since it entered North American open-wheeled racing in 1976. Cosworth has won 166 CART-sanctioned races and 46 USAC-sanctioned races, including five victories in 1996 with the Ford-Cosworth XB engine during the inaugural season of the Indy Racing League [IRL]. Michael Andretti has won the most races using a Cosworth engine [25], followed by Rick Mears [20], Bobby Rahal [18], Mario Andretti [16] and Johnny Rutherford [16].

SPARK PLUGS - Team Rahal driver Michel Jourdain, Jr., tops all CART drivers this season having completed 1,069 of a possible 1,073 laps [99.6%] ... since re-entering CART in 1992, Ford-Cosworth has never failed to win at least one of the first seven races to open the season.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jacques Villeneuve , Gil de Ferran , Michael Andretti , Jimmy Vasser , Bruno Junqueira , Max Papis , Patrick Carpentier , Alex Tagliani , Christian Fittipaldi , Paul Tracy , Kenny Brack , Townsend Bell , Mario Dominguez , Mario Andretti , Rick Mears , Cristiano da Matta , Johnny Rutherford , Michel Jourdain
Teams ART Grand Prix