Seattle: Newman/Haas Racing preview

Driver Stats and Quotes: BRUNO JUNQUEIRA , ...

Driver Stats and Quotes:

BRUNO JUNQUEIRA , #1 PacifiCare Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone:

- IN VANCOUVER: It will be his third race here. Junqueira's highest start came in his rookie event here in 2001 of sixth place (finished 12th) and his highest finish came last year of ninth place after a late race multi-car crash after running fourth after he started 12th.

- SECOND IN STANDINGS WITH 124 POINTS: Was second fastest in provisional qualifying in St. Pete but his fastest qualifying lap in final qualifying (potentially third) was disallowed because he brought out a red flag when he spun and stopped on course. More red flags during the session prevented him from running faster than the time he set on Friday and he started seventh. Dropped to 14th in race due to losing many positions on his first of three pit stops when the air hose of the inside rear tire changer's air gun disengaged. Charged to a 3rd place finish...More problems in qualifying led to a seventh place start in Mexico despite being fastest in both pre-qualifying practice sessions as he also did in St. Pete. Ran as high as third in the race but spun and dropped to ninth. Many on-track passes enabled him to finish fifth...Started fourth in Long Beach and finished third...Set second fastest qualifying time in England but started third due to Bourdais earning the second-place, front row start by setting the fastest time in final qualifying. Finished second...Started second in Germany and finished fourth after he led 23 laps and ran in top three most of the event...Started eighth in Milwaukee (based on combined practice times due to rain in qualifying) but crashed on the first racing lap in Milwaukee and from a two-way tie for first place in the points to third with 66. The Ford Blue Box indicated that the car took a 70 G-force backward impact while the accelerometer in his earpiece indicated he took a 100 G-force hit...Earned his first bonus point of the season with provisional pole in Laguna Seca. Started and finished second to take sole possession of second place in standings ...Charged from his worst qualifying position of 11th place in Portland to finish fourth...Qualified fifth in Cleveland and earned his fifth podium of the season with third place...Provisional pole sitter in Toronto but started 2nd. Earned his sixth top-three finish with third place and is 15 pts. Behind leader Tracy (139) with 124 and a 23-point maximum available in Vancouver.

- ON ROAD/STREET COURSE: Finished in the top-five in all eight road/street course races so far this season including SIX podiums. Two of his three wins came on this type of course ('01 Elkhart Lake road course, '02 Denver street course).

SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS , #2 Lilly Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone:

- IN VANCOUVER: Will be his first race here.

- TOP ROOKIE IN POINT STANDINGS IN FIFTH: By earning the pole position in his Champ car debut in St. Pete, Bourdais became the first driver to accomplish the feat since Nigel Mansell won the pole for the '93 Australian event - also while driving for NHR...Bourdais led 30 laps in St. Pete and became the first driver in the 25 year history of series to lead the first laps of his inaugural Champ car race...He also set the fastest race lap...Won his second pole in the series in Monterrey as well as set a track record. He led the first 16 laps but a faulty radio led to a missed pit stop. Also had a troubled pit stop and later brushed the wall entering the pits which ultimately led to retire from the race in 17th place...Started fifth in Long Beach, led three laps in the race and retired in 16th place due to engine failure after he completed 70 of 90 laps...Earned his first Champ Car victory in only his fourth event at Brands Hatch after starting second and leading 95 laps...First driver in series history to win from pole in his oval racing debut in Germany after he led 74 laps in the closest finish (0.08) since 2000 Michigan race...Started 13th in Milwaukee (based on combined practice times due to qualifying being rained out) and finished ninth despite an overheating engine in the early stages of the race...Probable third place finish ended when his pop-off valve failed while fourth and he retired after 77 of 87 laps in Laguna Seca...Started fourth in Portland but low tire pressure led to an early stop that dropped him to 18th place but he charged back to third place before a rear wing failure forced him to retire with 9 laps to go. Dropped from fifth to seventh in the point standings after Portland with 53 points...For the second time this season he won the race from pole in Cleveland and moved from seventh to fifth in the point standings with 74...Qualified 6th in Toronto and finished 4th to retain 5th place rank with 86 pts.

- SIX BONUS POINTS: (St. Pete - Fri. & Sat. qual; Mexico - Sat. qual.; Germany - qual. & leading most laps; Clev. - Sat. qual.).

- RANKED 3rd IN LAPS LED -- 252: Led 30-St. Pete., 16-Monterrey, 3-Long Beach, 95-England (victory), 74-Germany (victory), 1-Portland, 33-Clev. (victory). Third behind Paul Tracy (448) and Michel Jourdain (324) for most laps led in 2003.

- OTHER ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Was ranked No. 1 for most poles won at 4 until the previous race in Toronto when Paul Tracy matched the rookie's feat...Leads "Rookie of Year" standings...Second to Paul Tracy for most wins at three...Only driver to have won on a road course and oval this season.

What They're Saying About...

BRUNO JUNQUEIRA, #1 PacifiCare Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone: "I ran very competitively the last two years in Vancouver but haven't had the results to show for it so hopefully I can finish strong in the PacifiCare car this year. The first year I started sixth but Paul Tracy hit me in Turn 1 and I went to last place but got back up to twelfth and scored one point. The second year I was running third then after the last pit stop my wheel was loose so I had to make an extra stop and was fifth or sixth. With a few laps to go there was a big crash in front of me and I hit Adrian Fernandez and didn't finish the race but still scored some points. The accident with Adrian was pretty scary. We were on a restart and everybody had very cold tires and there is a kink there that you take in fifth gear at about 160 mph. There were a bunch of cars in front of me and I think Carpentier spun and Tagliani braked to avoid it and then Adrian hit Tagliani and spun and I hit Adrian. He got hurt but thank God he's good now. "For sure every race is really important now for the Championship. Especially the street races because it is very easy to make a mistake and very easy not to score points. You have to be consistent and Vancouver is a difficult track. It takes a long time to get the tires up to temperature and the weather can play havoc but I hope we can get a great result for the No. 1 PacifiCare car. "I love Vancouver. It's my favorite city of the North American races. I think it's a pretty nice city and there are a lot of mountains and a good nightlife with great restaurants. I enjoy so much to go to Vancouver. It's a challenging street course and I hope the Newman/Haas team will be good there again and start from pole like last year."

SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS, #2 Lilly Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone: "The main thing I have learned about the Vancouver race from watching the past events and going through the historical data the team has is that it looks like it rains pretty often there. The rain put us a little behind in learning about the car or the track in Toronto so I am hoping for good weather all weekend this time. It will be another street course for me to discover and I am also looking forward to being in Vancouver because it seems to be the favorite race city of many drivers. I think I am pretty confident approaching every event. It looks like we have a strong baseline car and everywhere we have gone the car is fairly strong. I'm not worried about the potential of the car before a race -- it's more about how I can fit and how the car fits to me and how quick I can get up to speed on this new race track. It was definitely good to win after having some DNF's (did not finish) and then follow the win up with a fourth place finish in Toronto. It was a difficult weekend for us and we were able to finish fourth so we are looking forward to a challenging weekend in Vancouver but want to improve on the results. It's a shame we are not really fighting for the Championship at the moment because of all of the DNF's so far but that is motor racing. There are nine more races to go we have plenty of time to get back to the top."

-nhr-

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About this article
Series NHRA
Drivers Adrian Fernandez , Paul Tracy , Nigel Mansell , Michel Jourdain