Houston Sunday track notes

Good morning from beautiful downtown Houston, Texas for Round 12 of The CART Toyota Atlantics Championship. Today's track activities include a 15-minute warm up session starting at 8:00 a.m., followed by 43-lap race starting at 9:40 a.m. The...

Good morning from beautiful downtown Houston, Texas for Round 12 of The CART Toyota Atlantics Championship. Today's track activities include a 15-minute warm up session starting at 8:00 a.m., followed by 43-lap race starting at 9:40 a.m. The weather this morning is once again perfect, as it has been all weekend. Temperatures should once again warm up into the high 70's by race time. Yokohama Tire engineers report a track temperature of 70 degrees at the start of the warm up session with an ambient temperature of 68 degrees. There is a very light breeze blowing from the north up the front straight.

The track in Houston is a temporary street course that measures 1.527 miles. The CART Toyota Atlantic Championship race will consist of 43-laps (65.661 miles)

GREEN FLAG waves at 8:00 a.m. to start the 15-minute warm up session.

At 8:05 a.m. #9 ORSI runs off into the runoff area in Turn 5 and continues on under power.

At 8:07 a.m. #55 BELL pits the car for a carry over penalty from Elkhart Lake. #55 BELL retires from the session.

At 8:40 a.m., 10 minutes into the session the fastest driver so far is #3 WHELDON with a time of 1:08.704 seconds (80.013 mph), followed by #1 BORDIN at 1:09.201 seconds (79.438 mph), and #48 GURNEY at 1:09.565 seconds (79.022 mph). 5 minutes remain in the session.

CHECKERED FLAG waves at 8:15 a.m. bringing an end to the 15-minute warm up session. The session was run incident free.

The top five drivers of the session are:

#3 Daniel Wheldon 1:07.977 seconds (80.869 mph) Lap 12 of 12

#27 Buddy Rice 1:07.978 seconds (80.867 mph) Lap 11 of 11

#48 Alex Gurney 1:08.162 seconds (80.649 mph) Lap 10 of 12

#46 Martin Basso 1:08.203 seconds (80.601 mph) Lap 10 of 10

#1 Andrew Bordin 1:08.676 seconds (80.045 mph) Lap 9 of 10

Bright sunny skies are still present for the start of the race and the breeze from the north is still present. Yokohama Tire engineers report a track temperature of 74 degrees at the start of the race with an ambient temperature of 71 degrees. There is no threat of rain.

Andrew Bordin (#1 PPI Motorsports/MCI WorldCom) earned his second pole of the season yesterday and will lead the field to the green flag. David Rutledge (#19 Lynx Racing) will line up beside Bordin on the outside of the front row.

RACE

At 9:37 a.m., the command "Gentlemen, Start your Toyota Engines!" is given.

At 9:38 a.m., the Toyota Solara pace car leads the field off of the grid for the first of three pace laps.

GREEN FLAG waves at 9:40 a.m. to start Round 12 of The CART Toyota Atlantic Championship. #1 BORDIN gets the jump and leads the field on the first lap followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #46 BASSO, #48 GURNEY, and #3 WHELDON. #27 RICE gets a bad start and falls to sixth place.

The running order 1 Lap complete shows #1 BORDIN leading by .860 seconds over #19 RUTLEDGE, #46 BASSO, #48 GURNEY, and #3 WHELDON.

On Lap 2, #27 RICE passes #3 WHELDON for fifth on the inside of Turn 5.

YELLOW FLAG waves on Lap 3 when #61 GOSPARINI slides and makes heavy contact with inside of the Turn 2 wall to the right side of the car. #61 GOSPARINI bounces off of the wall and collects #17 CONTE who hits #61 GOSPARINI on the left side of the car. #17 CONTE has damage to the right side pod but continues on under power. #61 GOSPARINI gets out of the car under his own power and is uninjured in the incident. #61 GOSPARINI retires from the race due to contact.

BLACK FLAG waves on Lap 5 to #17 CONTE for an inspection of the damage received in the last incident. #17 CONTE pits the car to inspect the damage and leaves the pits before going a lap down.

The running order after 5 Laps complete and under Yellow Flag conditions still shows the leader as #1 BORDIN, followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #46 BASSO, #48 GURNEY and #27 RICE. 38 laps remain in the race.

GREEN FLAG waves on Lap 7 resuming the race. #1 BORDIN leads going into Turn 1 and the rest of the top five stays the same.

On Lap 7, #27 RICE pulls to the inside and passes #48 GURNEY for fourth place in Turn 5.

BLACK FLAG waves on Lap 7 to #17 CONTE for a pit exit violation. #17 CONTE pits the car the following lap to answer the Black Flag penalty with a drive through of the pits.

YELLOW FLAG waves on Lap 8 when #46 BASSO makes heavy contact at the exit of Turn 5. #46 BASSO loses the rear wing and right rear wheel. #46 BASSO continues on under his own power and pits the car. #46 BASSO retires from the race due to contact. #27 RICE moves up to third place, #48 GURNEY to fourth and #3 WHELDON takes over fifth.

The running order after 10 Laps complete and under Yellow Flag conditions still shows the leader as #1 BORDIN, followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #48 GURNEY, and #3 WHELDON. 33 laps remain in the race.

GREEN FLAG waves on Lap 13 to resume the race. #1 BORDIN leads and the running order for the rest of leaders stays the same.

On Lap 13, #3 WHELDON pulls to the inside of #48 GURNEY down the back straight and completes the pass in Turn 5 to take over fourth place.

On Lap 14, #14 LALLY has moved up to eighth place from his starting position of 16th.

On Lap 14, #20 NAGASHIMA brushes the wall in Turn 2 and continues on under power.

The running order after 15 Laps complete still shows the leader as #1 BORDIN followed #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #3 WHELDON, #48 GURNEY. The lead margin is 1.576 seconds and 2.198 seconds back to third place. 28 laps remain in the race.

On Lap 16, #15 ASAI makes contact with tire wall in Turn 3 and loses the rear wing. #15 ASAI continues under his own power and pits the car the following lap. #15 ASAI retires from the race due to contact.

The running order after 20 Laps complete still shows the leader as #1 BORDIN followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #3 WHELDON, and #48 GURNEY. The lead margin is 1.450 seconds and 2.147 seconds back to third place. 23 laps remain in the race.

On Lap 22, #2 JENSEN and #26 CUTLER make wheel to wheel contact in Turn 1. Both cars continue on under power.

On Lap 22, #17 CONTE brushes the wall in Turn 2 and continues on under power.

YELLOW FLAG waves on Lap 24 when #55 BELL spins in Turn 6 and stalls. CART safety workers help #55 BELL get the car restarted and he continues on under power.

Houston, Texas No. 18

THE CART TOYOTA ATLANTIC CHAMPIONSHIP Press Notes - Sunday October 1, 2000

On Lap 25 and under Yellow Flag conditions, #48 GURNEY is slow on course and pulls into the pits. #48 GURNEY retires from the race due to mechanical failure. #9 ORSI moves up to fifth place.

On Lap 25, #12 ROY pulls off course in the runoff area in Turn 5 and retires from the race due to mechanical failure.

The running order after 25 Laps complete and under Yellow Flag conditions still shows the leader as #1 BORDIN, followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #3 WHELDON, and #9 ORSI. 18 laps remain in the race.

GREEN FLAG waves on Lap 28 to resume the race. #1 BORDIN continues to lead but #14 LALLY passes #9 ORSI for fifth place. #29 MORAN JR. also passes #9 ORSI in Turn 5 to take over sixth place.

On Lap 28, #2 JENSEN pulls off course in Turn eight and retires from the session due to mechanical failure.

The running order after 30 Laps complete still shows the leader as #1 BORDIN followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #3 WHELDON, and #14 LALLY. The lead margin is 1.024 seconds and 2.272 seconds back to third place. 13 laps remain in the race.

YELLOW FLAG waves on Lap 31 when #17 CONTE slides into the tire wall in Turn 7. #17 CONTE has damage to the left front of the car. #17 CONTE gets out of the car under his own power and is uninjured in the incident. #17 CONTE retires from the race due to contact.

GREEN FLAG waves on Lap 34 to resume the race. #1 BORDIN continues to lead

The running order after 35 Laps complete still shows the leader as #1 BORDIN followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #3 WHELDON, and #14 LALLY. The lead margin is 1.162 seconds and 1.827 seconds back to third place. 8 laps remain in the race.

On Lap 35, #55 BELL pulls into the runoff area in Turn 7 after making contact with #20 NAGASHIMA. #55 BELL gets out of the car and retires from the race due to contact. #20 NAGASHIMA continues on under power.

The running order after 38 Laps complete still shows the leader as #1 BORDIN followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #3 WHELDON, and #14 LALLY. The lead margin is 1.066 seconds and 1.813 seconds back to third place. 5 laps remain in the race.

Houston, Texas No. 19

THE CART TOYOTA ATLANTIC CHAMPIONSHIP Press Notes - Sunday October 1, 2000

On Lap 39, #29 MORAN JR. passes #14 LALLY for fifth place in Turn 5.  #14 LALLY has
lost power.  #9 ORSI also passes to take over sixth.

On Lap 39, #14 LALLY pulls off course in Turn 6 and retires from the race due to mechanical failure.

The running order after 39 Laps complete still shows #1 BORDIN leading the way followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #3 WHELDON, and #29 MORAN JR. The lead margin is down to .962 seconds, and 1.270 seconds back to third place. 4 laps remain in the race.

BLACK FLAG waves on Lap 39 to #20 NAGASHIMA for the damaged rear wing. #20 NAGASHIMA pits the car and retires from the race due to contact.

The running order after 40 Laps complete remains the same.  The lead margin is .962
seconds and 1.877 seconds back to third place.  3 laps remain in the race.
The running order after 41 Laps complete remains the same.  The lead margin is .724
seconds and 1.749 seconds back to third place.  2 laps remain in the race.
The running order after 42 Laps complete remains the same.  The lead margin is .954
seconds and 1.958 seconds back to third place.  1 lap remains in the race.

WHITE FLAG waves on Lap 43 to #1 BORDIN holding a .954 second lead over #19 RUTLEDGE.

CHECKERED FLAG waves at the conclusion of Lap 43 to #1 BORDIN followed by #19 RUTLEDGE, #27 RICE, #3 WHELDON, and #29 MORAN JR. The margin of victory is .668 seconds.

Andrew Bordin in the PPI Motorsports/MCI WorldCom Swift wins the final race of the season here at Houston. This is Bordin's second win of the season after winning on another temporary street course in Toronto. This is also Bordin's fifth podium finish of the season. The win moved Bordin up to third place in the championship points with a total of 133. This is Bordin's fifth career victory with one win in 1998 and two wins in 1999.

Bordin set the fastest lap of the race on his 42nd lap with a time of 1:07.293 seconds (81.691 mph). This time broke the record held by Buddy Rice.

Daniel Wheldon (#3 PPI Motorsports/Jayhard/BG Products) wins the rookie of the year award with his fourth place finish. Wheldon was able to hold off Martin Basso (#46 Michael Shank Racing/BBB Valve) after Basso failed to finish the race after his contact incident.

Race Statistics

Margin of victory: .668 seconds

Average Speed: 69.459 mph

Lap Leaders: Bordin 1-43

Fastest Lap: Andrew Bordin - 1:07.293 seconds (81.691 mph) Lap 42

Cautions: 4 for 12 laps (#61-#17 Contact, #46 Contact, #55 Stall, #17 Contact)

Unofficial Race Results Unofficial Championship Standings

1. Andrew Bordin Buddy Rice 185

2. David Rutledge Daniel Wheldon (R) 159

3. Buddy Rice Andrew Bordin 133

4. Daniel Wheldon (R) Martin Basso (R) 129

5. Rocky Moran Jr. Rocky Moran Jr. 115

Race Winner - Andrew Bordin

Andrew Bordin (#1 PPI Motorpsorts/MCI WorldCom) - "I was extremely extremely pleased. For so many reasons, this race meant so much to me. I needed to win this race to finish third in the Championship, which obviously is very important. I really wanted to win this race for Cal (Wells). This is PPI's final outing and Cal has done a lot for me, the Series, and basically everyone he is associated with. And of course, for my guys, they have worked so hard for me for two years now. It has been a great experience with this team. Nick (Harvey), the team manager has given me a lot of support. Kyle, my engineer has given me great cars. My car today was amazing. It was so easy to drive that car. Kyle did such a great job. I was really hard on the gearboxes this weekend and Mike and the guys worked endlessly to help me win today. My sponsors WorldCom, Player's and Thyssen have also given me endless support which I really appreciate." (Katie Welch)

Cal Wells (PPI Motorpsorts - Team Owner) "Well of course, this is a special win for us. Andrew drove a great race today, and he and Dan have done a great job all year. This program has been special to us and of course we won our first open wheel championship here. This is a great series." (Katie Welch)

2nd Place - David Rutledge

David Rutledge (#19 Lynx Racing) - "Our goal today, as always, was to win the race. But beyond that, it was important to have a finish that ended the season on a high note and set the tone for our winter testing and next year. The car was as good as a car can be on a street circuit, and all the work we've done during the season has really started to come together. I'm going to be back with Lynx next year, and to know what I'll be doing next season for the first time in my career, is really a great feeling. Lynx is a great team, and I'm proud to be part of it." (Peter Frey)

3rd Place - Buddy Rice

Buddy Rice (#27 DSTP Motorsports) - "Once again, we had an excellent car. I had a difficult start and hit the rev limiter while shifting into third. I fell back a few spots but was able to move back up and catch David. We could run with him, but we didn't have enough to get around. It was another great race and solid finish for the DSTP Atlantic team. It's been a terrific year and now it's time to celebrate our championship win."

12th Place - Andy Lally

Andy Lally (#14 World Speed Motorsports/NW Speedwerx/Intercat/Walker Racing) - "It's unfortunate, but I guess that racing. I had electrical failure and pulled off with only five laps to go. I'm pretty disappointed to go out of the race while running in fifth place."

18th Place - Akihiro Asai

Akihiro Asai (#15 World Speed Motorsports/Pro Staff/Gaikokuya/Walker Racing) - "I was behind Rocky (Moran Jr.) and I was really pushing and got a little loose in Turn 3 and clipped the tire wall. I kept going because I didn't know that I lost my right back wing. I was black flagged to come in and that was it for my race."

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About this article
Series Atlantic
Drivers Alex Gurney , Martin Basso , David Rutledge , Rocky Moran Jr. , Andy Lally , Buddy Rice , Andrew Bordin , Akihiro Asai , Michael Shank
Teams Michael Shank Racing