Justin Wilson moves up to third, Cristiano da Matta holds tenth position after final day of qualifying at Burke Lakefront Airport CLEVELAND, Ohio, June 24, 2006 -- Justin Wilson ( ...
Justin Wilson moves up to third, Cristiano da Matta holds tenth position after final day of qualifying at Burke Lakefront Airport
CLEVELAND, Ohio, June 24, 2006 -- Justin Wilson (#9 CDW / RuSPORT Ford-Cosworth / Lola / Bridgestone) improved his starting position from fourth to third for the Grand Prix of Cleveland in final qualifying today, posting a time of 56.651 seconds. His RuSPORT teammate, Cristiano da Matta (#10 RuSPORT Ford-Cosworth / Lola / Bridgestone), also improved his best-lap time to 57.570 seconds, but remained in tenth place on the starting grid. Both RuSPORT drivers will try to continue their trend of improvement in tomorrow's race at Burke Lakefront Airport.
"I'm very pleased to be third-quickest today," said Wilson. "I would have liked to have been quicker, but we've got a little bit more work to do to find some more speed. But it gives us a good starting position for tomorrow. We're around our main competitors, so hopefully, the CDW team can have a good, strong race and be on top of the podium tomorrow."
"It was a difficult day, because I couldn't get the car to handle the way I wanted," said da Matta. "Obviously, I'm disappointed for the whole team. We're scratching our heads and trying to find what's wrong, and what we need to do to be better. Hopefully, tomorrow will be better. The track is good, and A.J.'s time is proof of that. We just need to sort out our problems and be better tomorrow."
"Justin and his entire CDW team did a great job today," said RuSPORT president Jeremy Dale. "They worked on the car all day, and by the end of this morning's practice, the car was very quick. They were also quick in qualifying, but unfortunately, after switching to the alternate red-sidewalled Bridgestone tires, they just couldn't get a clean lap. So, it was difficult to challenge for a front row position today. There's so much racing room here at Cleveland that starting third on the grid is no penalty, and I think Justin has a great race car for tomorrow."
"Cristiano and his team made some progress today," continued Dale. "But, we're just not quite where we need to be, and obviously the tenth starting position is a disappointment for the team. Having said that, Cleveland is one place where you can start quite deep in the field, and if you've got a good race car and you play your strategy right, you can have a very, very solid race result. So, we'll go one day at a time, here. Cristiano loves the race track, and we'll look for a good result tomorrow."