Bourdais provides fireworks in Cleveland qualifying French rookie dominates final time trials Sebastien Bourdais provided all the fireworks on this Fourth of July final qualifying session for tomorrow night's US Bank Presents the Cleveland ...
Bourdais provides fireworks in Cleveland qualifying
French rookie dominates final time trials
Sebastien Bourdais provided all the fireworks on this Fourth of July final qualifying session for tomorrow night's US Bank Presents the Cleveland Grand Prix, the Champ Car series' 22nd visit to Burke Lakefront Airport.
With four minutes to go in the hour-long session, the rookie took his #2 McDonald's/Lilly Lola/Ford-Cosworth/Bridgestone racer to first place, and then dropped his quick time with a lap of the 2.106-mile airport circuit of 58.014 seconds (130.686mph). "These were difficult conditions. We worked hard on the setup and went out pretty late on our second run to put those laps together," he explained.
With his Thursday quick lap, Paul Tracy starts second in the #3 Team Player's Lola. The Canadian had a fast tour going midway in the session but spun, losing the time per CART rules. "With the dirty track, I wanted to save tires for the race," he said. Patrick Carpentier earned third on the grid with his 58.449-second lap (129.713mph) in the #32 Team Player's Lola, set just after he spun but collected his car. "I was pushing really hard, and on my second run, the guys had gotten the car to turn direction really well."
Oriol Servia makes his best CART start in the #20 Visteon Lola, fourth at 58.205 seconds (129.596mph) and remarked "the car worked really well. With the dirty track, seeing at night can be a factor." Lola runners took the top nine positions and the third row holds Bruno Junqueira's #1 PacifiCare Lola at 58.506 seconds (129.587mph) and Michel Jourdain Jr.'s #9 Gigante Lola at 58.700 seconds (129.158mph). "We wanted to do better but we are starting in the third row and that is good," Jourdain said.
Alex Tagliani's #33 Johnson Controls Lola lines up in seventh after running 58.718 seconds (129.119mph). Tag found it "an interesting, unpredictable session." The Herdez Competition Team, Mario Dominguez (#55 Lola), who said "I had a great car for this session," and Roberto Moreno #4 Lola) who thought "we did really well today" hold 8th and 9th positions, respectively for Saturday's race.
With the top ten cars separated by one second, the Champ Car field for tomorrow's 115-lap race is very tight. The action begins at 8:30PM under the 23 Musco light towers that surround the 10-turns of runways and taxiways. CBS Sports shows the contest on Sunday afternoon at 3:30PM.