BARRICHELLO EARNS FIRST CAREER USGP POLE WITH RECORD LAP Ferrari teammates seize front row; Sato to start third INDIANAPOLIS, Saturday, June 19, 2004 - Rubens Barrichello won the pole June 19 for the fifth running of the United States Grand Prix...
BARRICHELLO EARNS FIRST CAREER USGP POLE WITH RECORD LAP
Ferrari teammates seize front row; Sato to start third
INDIANAPOLIS, Saturday, June 19, 2004 - Rubens Barrichello won the pole June 19 for the fifth running of the United States Grand Prix with a lap of 1 minute, 10.223 seconds, 133.534 mph in his Ferrari.
It was the quickest Formula One official qualifying lap at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and Barrichello's 10th-career pole and his first at IMS.
The USGP, which starts at noon (EST) Sunday, will have an all-Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro front row. Six-time World Champion and two-time USGP winner Michael Schumacher qualified second at 1:10.400, 133.198.
Takuma Sato put his Lucky Strike BAR Honda in third place on the starting grid for the 73-lap Formula One race with a lap of 1:10.601, 132.819.
Schumacher was the 12th car to make a qualifying attempt and took the pole. Sato went out five cars later and missed the pole by only .201 of a second.
But 2002 USGP winner Barrichello was the final driver to qualify after turning the quickest lap in the pre-qualifying session. He also was fastest in three of four practices Friday and Saturday and was relieved that his dominance in practice translated into pole success.
"It was an easy lap, trying not to make a mistake on the limit," Barrichello said. "Finally, my first pole of the season.
"I think the car has been good all the time. We made some progress since yesterday, but I think Michael has made more progress. So we were very close this morning. Before pre-qualifying we made a small change, and the car became better. For qualifying, it was difficult for everyone because the wind picked up."
Ferrari has now won four of the five poles in United States Grand Prix at Indianapolis history. Schumacher won the pole from 2000-2002, and West McLaren Mercedes driver Kimi Raikkonen took the top spot in 2003. This event will mark the second time that both Ferraris start on the front row. Barrichello started second to Schumacher in 2002.
Jenson Button, teammate to Sato at BAR-Honda, qualified a USGP career-best fourth at 1:10.820, 132.409 after posting the quickest time in the third practice session in the morning.
Juan Pablo Montoya, the 2000 Indianapolis 500 winner, qualified fifth in his BMW WilliamsF1 Team entry at 1:11.062, 131.958, his worst starting position in four career USGP starts.
The fifth running of the United States Grand Prix is the centerpiece of full day of racing Sunday on the 2.605-mile IMS circuit. Public gates open at 6 a.m. The F1 driver's parade takes place at 9:15 a.m. and the Porsche Michelin Supercup series will race at 9:40 a.m.
Following the USGP, at approximately 2:15 p.m., the future stars of open-wheel racing will compete in the Formula BMW USA series race.
Tickets: Tickets for the United States Grand Prix can be purchased online at www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com, or by calling the IMS ticket office at (317) 492-6700 or (800) 822-INDY outside the Indianapolis area. Parking and camping information also can be obtained through the ticket office.