CHAMPCAR/CART: Tracy fastest in Saturday practice

Provisional pole sitter Paul Tracy maintained his pace by putting in the fastest time for the second practice session for the Molson Indy Vancouver. This was one last opportunity for the driver's to get their cars ready for final qualifying this...

Provisional pole sitter Paul Tracy maintained his pace by putting in the fastest time for the second practice session for the Molson Indy Vancouver. This was one last opportunity for the driver's to get their cars ready for final qualifying this afternoon.

Championship points leader Cristiano da Matta was back on form after a miserable day yesterday. He only managed to qualify sixteenth after suffering a series of problems with his car. Tracy and da Matta put in fast laps under 1:01.

As expected, the lap times were down a bit from those in the previous session, with the majority of the drivers putting in a fast lap that was quicker than yesterday's pole time. Only Tori Takagi did not manage to beat his Friday qualifying time. He also kept the course working in the turn six run-off area very busy.

About halfway through practice, Kenny Brack tapped the wall just before the pit entrance. Teammate Scott Dixon did the same thing in practice yesterday. Brack broke the car badly enough that he pulled the car into a run-off area and parked it. After a quickly run back to the pits, he was able to rejoin the session.

da Matta topped the board for most of the session until Dixon beat his time with twenty-five minutes to go. However, this didn't last long when Tracy took top time and his teammate Dario Franchitti put in second. Tracy would hold top time to the end. Michael Andretti made a last minute fast run that put him in second, but da Matta did not allow him to keep that position.

Tony Kanaan struggled at the start of the session, unable to put together a fast time in either his primary or spare car. He evidentally figured out the problem and started putting in competitive times. However, the field picked up the pace and he ended the session in fourteenth position.

The session was red-flagged three times. First, with thirty minutes to go, when Bruno Junqueira lost control of the car under braking and put it into the tires in turn one. Junqueira was reportedly very sore after his accident yesterday in qualifying, spending this morning with his back on ice. The second was a result of a spin and stall by Kanaan coming out of turn three. The session ended with the third red flag, a result of Patrick Carpentier stuffing his car into the wall in turn one.

On the weather front, the temperatures were cool, the skies overcast and a breeze was building towards the end of the session. Although rain has not been forecast, many of the teams started this practice session by scrubbing in a set of rain tires anyway.

The final, hour-long qualifying session starts this afternoon at 1:45pm PDT.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Bruno Junqueira , Patrick Carpentier , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Kenny Brack , Cristiano da Matta , Tori Takagi