Fact Sheet The CART Toyota Atlantic Championship Round 4, Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach June 7-8, 2002, The Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca Event: Round 4 of the 12-event CART Toyota Atlantic Championship will be held on the 2.238-mile permanent...
The CART Toyota Atlantic Championship
Round 4, Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach
June 7-8, 2002, The Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca
Event: Round 4 of the 12-event CART Toyota Atlantic Championship will be held on the 2.238-mile permanent road course at the Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca as Saturday's feature event at the Grand Prix of Monterey Featuring the Shell 300. Saturday's race will mark the 26th time since 1976; the Atlantic series has competed on the famous circuit in Salinas, California.
Race Series: The CART-sanctioned Toyota Atlantic Championship is the top rung on CART's "Ladder System", and is noted for its long history of graduating its stars into CART competition. Among the drivers who have graduated from the Atlantic series are CART Champ car stars Michael Andretti, Jimmy Vasser, Patrick Carpentier and Alex Tagliani, former Champ Car stars Bobby Rahal and Danny Sullivan, as well as 1997 FIA Formula One Champion, Jacques Villeneuve.
Friday, June 7:
Practice 9:00 a.m. -- 9:40 a.m.
Qualifying 12:30 p.m. -- 1:00 p.m.
Saturday, June 8:
Qualifying 9:00 a.m. -- 9:40 a.m.
RACE 3:30 p.m. -- 4:45 p.m. (30 laps/67.14 miles)
Race: The traveling show that is the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship will continue its Preview: summer tour this weekend at the Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. Traditionally, the 2.238-mile permanent road course in Monterey has been one of the final races in past schedules; but this year, it will make up Round 4 of the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship on June 7th and 8th at the Grand Prix of Monterey Featuring the Shell 300.
The Atlantic Championship first raced at this road course in 1976. Only the storied Grand Prix of Trois-Rivieres has held more Atlantic races than Laguna Seca. Saturday's 3:00 p.m. PST 30-lap race will mark the 26th race for the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship at Laguna Seca. This year's Atlantic drivers will try to add their name to the record books of past winners here and join the likes of Gilles and Jacques Villeneuve, Jimmy Vasser, Mark Dismore, and Patrick Carpentier.
Last Year at: Laguna Seca marked the final race of the 2001 season and corination for the 2001 Laguna Seca: Champion, Brazil's Hoover Orsi driving for Hylton Motorsports. Orsi clinched the Championship six weeks earlier on the streets of Vancouver and was now racing for wins.
But rookie, Joey Hand, came to California on a two race win streak and won the pole in Saturday's qualifying. But it was an unsung Atlantic veteran that stole the show and broke into the win colume for the first time in his Atlantic career. Rocky Moran Jr. dove to the inside of Hand and Canada's Jonathan Macri on the first lap and never relinquished the lead. Hand was able to stay close to Moran Jr., but was never close to enough to challenge for the lead. Orsi would finish the race in third making eleven podium finishes in the season's twelve races. Macri would finish fourth with Martin Basso rounding out the top five.
Speed Channel will broadcast Saturday's Round 4 race from the Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca at 10:00 p.m. EST same day delay, while Atlantic fans in Canada can watch the race on RDS on Saturday, June 15th at 10:30 a.m. Check www.toyotaatlantic.com for updated information.
Next Race: After packing up at Laguna Seca, the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship heads up the west coast to Portland, Oregon for the G.I. Joes 200 at the Portland International Raceway on June 15-16. The Championship gets a much needed week off before hitting the road again for races in Chicago, Toronto, and Cleveland over the next three weeks.