CHAMPCAR/CART: Cleveland: Jimmy Vasser to start seventh

CLEVELAND, OH . . . Team Rahal's Shell driver Jimmy Vasser will start seventh in Sunday's Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland at Burke Lakefront Airport. Vasser's quick lap of 131.326 mph came on his final qualifying lap and secured for him his...

CLEVELAND, OH . . . Team Rahal's Shell driver Jimmy Vasser will start seventh in Sunday's Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland at Burke Lakefront Airport. Vasser's quick lap of 131.326 mph came on his final qualifying lap and secured for him his seventh top-ten start of 2002.

Michel Jourdain Jr. will start 16th after a disappointing qualifying session. Jourdain had run among the top-five in the morning practice but track congestion and changing track conditions led to qualifying woes.

Cristiano da Matta captured the pole position for the fourth time in the last five races. He is vying for a CART record fifth straight win in Sunday's race.

Sunday's race will be broadcast live on CBS (1:30 PM EDT).

Jimmy Vasser (#8 Shell Ford-Cosworth/Lola on Bridgestone tires) - "We had a little problem with the back of the car sliding around this afternoon. This morning we didn't have that trouble and I think the sliding cost us in qualifying. It looks like the front tire pressures were a little low and that caused a 'hook' sensation (over steer). We have been on the pace with everyone except (Cristiano) da Matta this weekend - from third to seventh - and it's all real close. We have to take what we have right now with the Shell car. It's not great but it's not horrible either. Of course, the start here is always wild. I can never anticipate the start here. I don't think about it. If you think about it too much, you get in trouble. You have to react when you get down there (in turn one). I know I want to get through turn one cleanly and run a strong race. Things will sort themselves out after the first lap."

Michel Jourdain Jr. (#9 Gigante Ford-Cosworth/Lola on Bridgestone tires) - "I'm pretty disappointed with the qualifying run. We had a good setup this morning but the track was a little more slippery this afternoon. We definitely lost grip. Because I thought our Gigante car was going in the right direction after today's practice. We have had some brake problems but it was better today. We were able to run in the Top Five this morning. That's why I was surprised that we weren't quicker this afternoon. It's difficult starting in the back of the pack. Actually I think we'll be pretty good for the race. I just wish I was farther up the grid."

-Team Rahal-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jimmy Vasser , Cristiano da Matta , Michel Jourdain