CHAMPCAR/CART: Cleveland: Team Kool Green race report

Tracy earns third place finish in Cleveland. CLEVELAND - Team KOOL Green's Paul Tracy renewed his hunt for the 2002 CART FedEx Championship title this weekend after storming his way to a third place finish in the Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland.

Tracy earns third place finish in Cleveland.

CLEVELAND - Team KOOL Green's Paul Tracy renewed his hunt for the 2002 CART FedEx Championship title this weekend after storming his way to a third place finish in the Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland. Tracy, who started the race in eleventh position moved up to seventh at the start of the 115 lap event on the 2.106-mile temporary road course and then jumped into fifth position following his second round of pit stops. When teammate Dario Franchitti was forced to retire a little more than halfway through the event, Tracy moved to fourth, and was able to claim third place when Christian Fittipaldi retired on lap 96. The third place finish marks the veteran racer and perennial crowd favorite's 46th career CART podium.

Tracy's teammate Dario Franchitti ran out of luck on lap 69 after a mechanical problem forced him into the pits and early retirement. Franchitti, who was running in second at the time, had led the race from laps 20 through 49 and was awarded a fourteenth place finish.

Patrick Carpentier won Sunday's Grand Prix of Cleveland after taking the race lead on lap 76. Michael Andretti was second.

Today's race also added $12,000 to the 100 Black Men of America program. The partnership, which is based on the team's pit stop performances, provides funds to the 100's urban technology program. TKG completed five pit stops in less than 12 seconds during today's race in order to earn the amount. TKG has now upped its 2002 donation total to $60,000 with two races remaining in the program. The team's next event with the 100 Black Men of America is Miami on October 6.

Cristiano da Matta continues to lead the CART FedEx Championship Series points standings with 120 points. Bruno Junqueira is second with 70 points. Dario Franchitti remains in third place with 64 points. Paul Tracy is eleventh with 50 points. TKG technical partner Michael Andretti is eighth with 52 points.

Paul Tracy - #26 KOOL Honda-Lola-Bridgestone

"It was a great day for Team KOOL Green. I had a really good middle stint of the race and I was catching Michael (Andretti). I just didn't have it on the third set of tires. It was a used set from qualifying and Michael pulled away again. Then, on the last set of tires I had a big cushion on Kenny (Brack) and I just decided that I was going to get as many points as I could. It was a great race for the whole team and I'm really happy for Patrick (race winner Carpentier). We needed to get these points and we're starting to move up."

Barry Green - Team Owner

"It was a really great weekend. We were fast but didn't qualify quite as well as we wanted. Dario qualified third, but was disappointed. He had some problems this weekend. He did awfully well considering the problems he had. However, if you take a look on the other side, Paul had a great race. Just look at the middle segment and you'll see how fast he was. He had awesome lap times and a fantastic finish. He drove his tail off today and did a great job."

Dario Franchitti - #27 KOOL Honda-Lola-Bridgestone

"It's been one of those weekends, we've just had problems all the way through it. Up until I went out I was running really well. It's very disappointing, especially with Cristiano (da Matta) having his problem earlier on, I was hoping we'd have a chance to start catching up in the points, but it just hasn't been Team KOOL Green's weekend. I'm not sure what really happened, the team will be taking a look at it and we'll figure it out. We just have to get focused on Vancouver now and plan on doing better there."

Allen McDonald - Chief Engineer

"We're very disappointed but there is a bright side because Dario had a terrific race going on. He led a lot of the race and we had a decent strategy that would have put us right into contention towards the end with Carpentier. We're getting to know the Lola better all the time and we are looking forward to Vancouver."

- TKG -

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Bruno Junqueira , Patrick Carpentier , Christian Fittipaldi , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Barry Green , Cristiano da Matta