Montreal, Quebec, Canada (June 17, 2000) - Buddy Rice, driver for the DSTP Atlantic team, did not finish today's CART Toyota Atlantic race following contact with Andrew Bordin as the two battled for position on the opening lap. Rice, who started...
Montreal, Quebec, Canada (June 17, 2000) - Buddy Rice, driver for the DSTP Atlantic team, did not finish today's CART Toyota Atlantic race following contact with Andrew Bordin as the two battled for position on the opening lap. Rice, who started second, entered Turn Two with Bordin alongside, when the two touched and Rice was sent spinning into the gravel. Damage to the front suspension prevented Rice from continuing with the race, which was eventually won by David Rutledge, followed by Bordin and Dan Wheldon.
"It's really a shame," said Rice. "We were looking forward to another great race today, but it just wasn't in the cards. David had a terrific start and Andrew and I were side-by-side through the first turn. We got a little too close and barely touched. It was just enough to send me off and damage the suspension. I feel terrible for the team. They gave me a great car all weekend and to have the race end this way is a complete disappointment. We lost our lead in the championship, but not by much. We'll be back."
Bordin inherited the championship points lead by virtue of his second place finish today, as well as an additional point for leading the most laps. He is followed by PPI teammate Wheldon, then Rice in third. Bordin now has 67 points to Wheldon's 65 and Rice's 61.
"Unfortunately, this just wasn't our weekend," said Dede Rogers, team owner. "In racing, you have to learn to take the bad with the good. Today's finish only motivates us to do better. No one ever said that going for a championship was easy, and we know we have our work cut out for us for the rest of the season. I have all of the confidence in the world in this team and now, more than ever, we're going to be fighting for the front."
DSTP has won two out of five Atlantic races this year, beginning with the second round at Homestead, followed by the Grand Prix of Long Beach. Rice has led in all four races leading up to Montreal.
Today's race will be televised via espn2 on Saturday, June 24, at 2:30 pm Eastern. Round six of the 12-race 2000 CART Toyota Atlantic season continues on Sunday, July 2, at the Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland in Cleveland, Ohio, part of the CART FedEx Championship weekend.