Portland: Forsythe Racing race notes

Stunning Atlantic Race in Portland for Forsythe Team as Hinchcliffe and Wirth take First and Third PORTLAND, Oregon - June 18, 2006 - Champ Car Atlantic racing is often unpredictable, but today's topsy-turvy race at the Trinity Carpet 100K ...

Stunning Atlantic Race in Portland for Forsythe Team as Hinchcliffe and Wirth take First and Third

PORTLAND, Oregon - June 18, 2006 - Champ Car Atlantic racing is often unpredictable, but today's topsy-turvy race at the Trinity Carpet 100K in Portland set a new standard for amazement as Forsythe's James Hinchcliffe came from eighth on the grid to stun the crowd as he took the lead from an ailing Ryan Lewis on the last lap to win his first career race. The Toronto native moves to second in the point standings as Yokohama Presents the Champ Car Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda. But his terrific outcome was almost overshadowed by teammate Andreas Wirth's amazing charge from 12th on the grid to another podium finish for the Championship points leader as he claimed third and expanded his points gap over the field.

James Hinchcliffe

"Passing, getting passed, cars coming on, cars going off, cars breaking down - it was like the race nobody wanted to win - but I'll take it! The #3 Emexis/INDECK car wasn't the best car out there this weekend but we really brought it back after a bit of a rough qualifying session. We were nice and consistent on a day when everybody seemed to be quick at first and then fall off. We made a few moves and gained some spots, but my heart goes out to Ryan (Lews, who was leading when his gearbox failed) and Joe (D'Agostino, who was second but pulled off track with two laps to go). But for us to come back from a difficult weekend at the last race in Monterrey to put two guys on the podium is a testament to just how hard our guys work. And I had to win the race; I couldn't let A.J. (Allmendinger, Forsythe Champ Car Team) make us all look bad by winning on his first weekend on the job. We pulled it off in style!"

Andreas Wirth

"It was like a win today! Coming from 12th on the grid, I was in the middle of the pack in the Festival Curves and I really thought I was in trouble when I lost a couple of positions, but the car was just great and I just picked them off one at a time. Congratulations to my team and my teammates, great job!"

Leonardo Maia

"The first turn here at Portland is always a crapshoot and I rolled snake eyes. I started fifth but got trapped in the middle of a bunch of cars and had to wait and wait for the cars in front of me while everybody else seemed to go around the inside and outside. I fell way down the field but was able to pass some cars and managed to get up to 10th at the end. But the team worked very hard this weekend and with my teammates first and third it just shows what a turnaround we've made since Monterrey. We're all feeling much more confident for Cleveland next weekend."

Richard Philippe

"I just can't find any luck. Right at the start I had bad understeer, and I knew I was in trouble. When you have understeer that bad, it's just going to burn up the front tires and get worse and worse. I could barely keep the car on the track by the last half of the race, and then with a lap or two to go I saw a bunch of smoke out the back and when I came into the pits a big fire broke out. This is getting very frustrating, but there's two races in Cleveland and there's no way my luck is going to continue like this. Our team is too good and my guys work to hard for us to be having the results we're getting."

The next two races in the Champ Car Atlantic Championship take place June 23-25 on the runways of Burke Lakefront Airport in Cleveland. For the first time since 1997, the Atlantic cars will have standing starts which should provide tremendous excitement for the fans. You can see all the action live on the Internet through the official website of Atlantic at www.ChampCarAtlantic.com. The races will also be broadcast on Speed TV on a tape-delayed basis, check your local listings. For more information about Forsythe Championship Racing, please visit www.Forsythe-Racing.com.

-Forsythe Racing

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About this article
Series Atlantic
Drivers Leonardo Maia , Ryan Lewis , Andreas Wirth , Richard Philippe , James Hinchcliffe