CHAMPCAR/CART: Vancouver: Lola Friday qualifying report

Tracy nabs Vancouver provisional pole: top seven qualifiers run with Lola cars. Paul Tracy and Team KOOL Green continue to find the sweet spot of their ...

Tracy nabs Vancouver provisional pole: top seven qualifiers run with Lola cars.

Paul Tracy and Team KOOL Green continue to find the sweet spot of their #26 Lola/Honda, taking provisional pole today for the 13th annual Molson Indy Vancouver at Concord Pacific Place. Driving a 61.888-second (103.600mph) lap around the 1.l781- mile street course, the Canadian favorite bested Team Target's Scott Dixon in the #44 Lola/Toyota, who churned a tour of 61.939 seconds (103.515mph) in pursuit, just .051 seconds in arrears. Kenny Brack was third in the #12 Target Lola/Toyota at 61.948 seconds (103.500mph).

"There was more left in the car," Tracy admitted after the hour-long session was complete. "It's great to be locked into the front row in a Canadian race" for the second time -- he qualified second in Toronto. "We're getting better each week with the Lola." Dixon admitted, "The track changed before we could adjust" late in the session, held under partly cloudy skies with track temperatures reaching 116 degrees and air temps at 79 degrees. Engineer Mark Paxtton noted, "We're starting to become familiar with one another and I'm understanding what Scott likes in his car. It takes time." Brack agreed that tomorrow most teams "will be a little faster, maybe half a second or 7/10ths. This was a really good day for us," the Swede said. "This is the best car I've had here" in three visits. He was quickest in morning practice and felt unlucky not to be first when the session ended under red/checkered conditions for Bruno Junqueira's heavy contact with the turn 6 wall. The #4 Target Lola/Toyota driver was okay but lost his best timed lap, moving from ninth to 13th for the day.

Dario Franchitti held the top spot with ten minutes remaining in the session yet took fourth place in the #27 Team KOOL Green Lola/Honda, setting his lap of 61.990sec/103.430mph on his ninth of 13 laps. Christian Fittipaldi hauled the #11 Lilly Lola/Toyota to fifth place with a tour of 62.179sec/103.115mph on his 11th of 12 total laps. Michel Jourdain, who has "struggled lately in qualifying," was sixth in the #9 Gigante Lola/Ford with a lap of 62.195sec/103.089mph. Michael Andretti qualified seventh in the #39 Motorola Lola/Honda with a lap of 62.195sec/103.089mph on these rough city streets. Fifteen of 18 qualifiers set laps within one second of Tracy.

Final qualifying is slated for Saturday afternoon at 1:45pm PDT and the Molson Indy Vancouver takes place on Sunday, July 28th at 1:30pm, shown live on Speed.

-lola-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Bruno Junqueira , Christian Fittipaldi , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Scott Dixon , Kenny Brack , Michel Jourdain