Henzler seals Porsche Michelin Supercup title with victory INDIANAPOLIS, Sunday, Sept. 28, 2003 -- Wolf Henzler of Germany won the Porsche Michelin Supercup race Sept. 28 at the United States Grand Prix and provisionally sealed the 2003 series...
Henzler seals Porsche Michelin Supercup title with victory
INDIANAPOLIS, Sunday, Sept. 28, 2003 -- Wolf Henzler of Germany won the Porsche Michelin Supercup race Sept. 28 at the United States Grand Prix and provisionally sealed the 2003 series title, making up for the disappointment of retirement from Saturday's race.
"I can't describe it," Henzler said. "First time the champion. I have no words to describe it. It was a happy day for me. The team worked very hard and very good the whole season to give me the perfect car for the last race."
The final standings await the outcome of an appeal against Pierre Kaffer's exclusion from the race Saturday. Stewards of the meeting determined that Kaffer deliberately caused the collision that took his car and that of Klaus Graf out after six laps.
Frank Stippler finished second today, .616 of a second behind Henzler. Patrick Huisman, the winner of Saturday's race, finished third.
Henzler provisionally captured the season title, 176-170, over Stippler.
But Stippler still was seething about Saturday's race, from which he was excluded after finishing fifth due to a protest by Henzler over rough driving tactics. Henzler didn't score any points after failing to finish Saturday, and Stippler lost 12 points due to the exclusion. Those lost points would have delivered Stippler the title after today's race.
"I'm not at all pleased with the finish because I think I am the champion," Stippler said. "I lost all the points yesterday. And the race before, there were some strange things going on."
Despite the post-race drama, the 16-lap race was uneventful. Henzler led from start to finish on the 2.605-mile road circuit, averaging 94.456 mph. His lead over Stippler, who was second the entire race, peaked at 1.6 seconds on Lap 9 after Henzler ran wide exiting Turn 11. Stippler could reclaim only one second of that gap over the last seven laps.
"It was no problem for me to win," Henzler said. "I like this racetrack. I won here last year, also on Sunday. I like it (the track); I like to come here to Indianapolis."
Journalist Kim Wolfkill was the top American finisher in 16th. Motocross superstar Travis Pastrana suffered right-front damage to his car on the first lap and retired after eight laps. Actor Antonio Sabato Jr. again was unable to start following the heavy damage to his car in Saturday qualifying.