Toyota Cleveland race notes

- Memo Gidley led 59 of 100 laps, but was forced to stop for a late splash of fuel dropped him back in the field. Despite the stop, the Target Ganassi driver drove valiantly back through the field and fell just short in second place - finishing...

- Memo Gidley led 59 of 100 laps, but was forced to stop for a late splash of fuel dropped him back in the field. Despite the stop, the Target Ganassi driver drove valiantly back through the field and fell just short in second place - finishing .305 seconds behind the winner.

- Today's second-place finish by Memo Gidley is the eighth podium for Toyota in eight races this season. In addition, it's Toyota's sixth road course podium finish in five races. A Toyota has finished third or better in every road course event this season.

- Memo Gidley's second-place finish is his first career podium and top five finish of his career - surpassing his previous best of sixth, also set with Toyota power last season at Road America. Gidley also led the most laps today and collected the bonus point. Gidley led a career-high 59 laps.

- With Memo Gidley's podium finish, he becomes the fifth different Toyota driver to finish on the podium this season, joining Cristiano da Matta, Scott Dixon, Roberto Moreno and Christian Fittipaldi.

- Jimmy Vasser's fifth-place finish is his fifth top-six finish of the season in eight races. Vasser gained 19 spots today going from 24th to fifth.

- Roberto Moreno's eighth-place marks his third consecutive top-10 finish. Moreno gained 17 spots in today's race. Moreno lost a probable podium finish and possibly a win after being forced off course to avoid Bryan Herta's spin late in the race while running third.

- With a seventh-place finish, Cristiano da Matta has now finished in the top-10 on every road/street course race of the season. He currently sits fifth overall in CART points.

- Five Toyota-powered cars finished in the top 10 today with Gidley (2nd), Vasser (5th), da Matta (7th), Moreno (8th) and Mauricio Gugelmin (10th).

- Scott Dixon continues to lead the CART Rookie of the Year standings with a 21-point lead over Target rookie Bruno Junqueira.

Jim Aust, Toyota vice president of motorsports: "Memo (Gidley) was outstanding today. We would have loved to have seen a victory, but he showed he can more than compete at this level with an opportunity with a top team. With a little it of luck in traffic, he would have had that first win, but I think it's apparent to everyone that while it didn't come today, it will come soon."

Memo Gidley, #12 Target Toyota: "I was pushing hard every single lap. The Target Ganassi team gave me a great car and the Toyota engine was great. I ran it as hard as I could every lap. We never once tried to conserve fuel and it never missed a beat. This is what I've worked for - trying to be ready for this opportunity. It's all about chasing a dream. The passion keeps you going -- and a lot of support from family and friends. I led last year at Long Beach, but that was just during cycling on a fuel stop. Today, we were fast and we were one of the cars that was going to win the race - it was amazing."

Cristiano da Matta, #6 Texaco/Havoline/Kmart Toyota: "The car wasn't as good when we were in a fuel conservation mode which was most of the race. When I ran harder, the car started to get better, but because we were on a two-stop strategy, we didn't get to run rich very much. We ran strong most of the weekend, but not qualifying up front hurt us a lot. My engineers and team did a good job, but the weekend didn't go our way."

Christian Fittipaldi, #11 Kmart Toyota: "It's obvious now that we should have run a different pit strategy or I should have burned less fuel, but it's hard to make that call at the beginning of a race where you think there will be yellows. We started the race with a good car, but it lost grip as the race went on."

Mauricio Gugelmin, #17 Nextel Toyota: "At the start of the race, my car was bouncing too much in the fron and I lost some positions. My first pit stop was a disaster and I lost even more positions. I went back out and drove as hard as I could with a clean set of tires and was able to gain some positions. It's too bad because my Nextel crew has worked very hard and we started off the weekend so good earning the pole position. At least, we finished in the top 10 and earned some points.

NEXT RACE: Molson Indy, July 15, ESPN, 1:00 p.m. EDT


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Series General
Drivers Jimmy Vasser , Memo Gidley , Bruno Junqueira , Roberto Moreno , Christian Fittipaldi , Scott Dixon , Mauricio Gugelmin , Bryan Herta , Cristiano da Matta