CHAMPCAR/CART: Bridgestone makes impressive debut Sneak Preview

CART FedEx Championship Series Sneak Preview at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Monterey, Calif. February 9-10, 2002 Bridgestone Makes Impressive and Consistent Public CART Debut The much-anticipated premiere of the FedEx Championship Series' ...

CART FedEx Championship Series
Sneak Preview at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Monterey, Calif.
February 9-10, 2002

Bridgestone Makes Impressive and Consistent Public CART Debut

The much-anticipated premiere of the FedEx Championship Series' newest major supplier and partner was a rousing success, as Bridgestone's Potenza racing radials made an impressive debut at this weekend's Sneak Preview. Bridgestone is the Official Tire of CART and will equip every entry in 2002.

The 20 Champ cars on hand ran 2,853 timed laps over the 2.238-mile permanent road course that will play host to its 20th Championship Auto Racing Teams event in June. That's a total of 6,385 miles completed on the Potenzas, and they were more than up to the challenge.

"Bridgestone Motorsport is proud to be a member of the CART community and we're proud of our debut performance this weekend," said Joe Barbieri, Bridgestone Motorsport Project Supervisor. "This was just a practice weekend, but it was still important for us to demonstrate to all the teams our commitment to providing race tires drivers can rely on without question in the grueling months ahead. The fact that the Potenza tires completed 6,385 flawless miles the past two days says a lot for their consistency and durability. We can't wait for Bridgestone to make its 'official' debut next month in Monterrey, Mexico, and look forward to supplying the FedEx series teams with the same impeccable tires throughout the season and crowning the first Bridgestone CART champion in November."

Drivers participating in the Sneak Preview were impressed with the Potenzas as well. Newman/Haas Racing's Cristiano da Matta was fastest in each of the four sessions and gave credit to his Bridgestone tires.

"The car showed some good speed every session," da Matta said. "No matter what we were trying, we were able to go quick. That's pretty important. We have a good barometer since every other guy was here, so I'm happy. The Bridgestone tires felt good all weekend. I think the track hasn't been used very much recently, so there was a little more wear than on a race weekend, but nothing too different. Everything was good. Bridgestone has a good tire, no doubt about it. Four straight championships in Formula One says a lot. The service we've had trackside, everything from Bridgestone has been up to our expectations. Very good."

-bridgestone-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Cristiano da Matta