EARLY DAYS IN TORONTO FOR TEAM AUSTRALIA Team Australia is confident of a better showing in tomorrow's final qualifying session after finishing midfield in opening qualifying for the Molson Grand Prix of Toronto in Canada today. Alex Tagliani...
EARLY DAYS IN TORONTO FOR TEAM AUSTRALIA
Team Australia is confident of a better showing in tomorrow's final qualifying session after finishing midfield in opening qualifying for the Molson Grand Prix of Toronto in Canada today.
Alex Tagliani was ninth and Will Power 13th in the Friday session, unable to find a set-up that maximised the extra grip offered by new tyres. The Aussie Vineyards Lolas struggled for grip on the bumpy Toronto street circuit on day that saw track temperatures fluctuate at the Canadian venue, making it difficult for drivers and teams to find a suitable set-up.
The Team Australia crew will work overnight to achieve a better qualifying set-up for tomorrow. Tagliani and the team finished third in Toronto last year and are keen to repeat that performance coming off the back of a strong showing in Cleveland two weeks ago.
Power is adjusting to yet another new circuit this weekend, but the Australian's time today was the second fastest by a rookie, putting him on track for an improvement in the Roshfrans Rookie of the Year standings.
AJ Allmendinger topped today's opening Champ Car qualifying session, ahead of Justin Wilson and Nelson Philippe.
WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY --
ALEX TAGLIANI -- TEAM AUSTRALIA/AUSSIE VINEYARDS #15 LOLA
"This afternoon was a pretty big struggle for us," said Tagliani.
"The car was a lot more slippery than this morning. Our car seems to work really well in cold weather and I was struggling with the warm temperature, so hopefully tomorrow we can find the things that we need to improve.
"Today we ran on two sets of new tyres the whole qualifying and the car didn't really improve and the new tyres just masked the (set-up) problem. This weekend is going to be hard because the competition is fierce.
"My strategy for the weekend is to work with the engineers and try to make some improvements and tomorrow evaluate the car again."
WILL POWER -- TEAM AUSTRALIA/AUSSIE VINEYARDS #5 LOLA
"Unfortunately it doesn't feel like we are using the new tyres well enough," said Power.
"We didn't get the 'bite' out of them that we usually get. It's something that we will definitely have to think about overnight and make changes so that we can get more out of the new tyres, because we seem to be losing a lot there.
"We don't have a good balance at the moment, so we are struggling a little bit out there in qualifying. It's a slippery track because there are different surfaces everywhere. There are corners where you have cement patches where you have no grip at all. It makes it difficult to find a good balance and make the car work.
"Tonight we will go back and take a look at some data and decide what we are going to do with the car."
DERRICK WALKER -- TEAM AUSTRALIA CO-OWNER
"Today was a little surprising that the cars, Champ Car and Atlantic, didn't go better than they have before," said Walker.
"Toronto has been a circuit where we have had fairly good results. The track is a little bit bumpier this year but still, we've got some work to do and some ideas for tomorrow and hopefully it will be better for both Champ Car and Atlantic."