CHAMPCAR/CART: Da Matta pleased with Sebring test

SEBRING, Fla. (February 9, 2001) --- Texaco/Havoline Newman/Haas driver Cristiano da Matta completed a two day test at Sebring International Raceway in Sebring, Fla. late yesterday and was pleased with the progress as the CART FedEx Championship...

SEBRING, Fla. (February 9, 2001) --- Texaco/Havoline Newman/Haas driver Cristiano da Matta completed a two day test at Sebring International Raceway in Sebring, Fla. late yesterday and was pleased with the progress as the CART FedEx Championship Series 2001 season-opener on March 11 in Monterrey, Mexico fast approaches.

"We tried lots of little things over the two days and I think we are in good shape so far," said da Matta. "We had a small problem on the first day and didn't get to run in the afternoon but I was happy with what we learned on Wednesday morning. On the second day, I had run over 70 miles before we stopped for lunch and 300 miles for the two-days. Our quickest lap was a 50.8 but we were trying so many little things and didn't put everything together to go for it totally so I know we are getting better each time we test. We have a few more days of testing here with Christian so I think we have made good progress. We are a little closer to Penske than before. Our car and Tony's (Kanaan) were the best of the rest at this test which definitely puts you at ease a little although you can never stop progressing."

Da Matta will continue testing next week while his teammate and racing's former "Most Eligible Bachelor" Christian Fittipaldi, is on his honeymoon after marrying the former Andrea Iversson this past Saturday, February 3, in Sao Paulo, Brazil (photo attached). Da Matta will test at Laguna Seca Raceway for two days between February 13-15 before handing over duties to Kmart Newman/Haas driver Fittipaldi on February 20-22 at Sebring International Raceway.

The 2001 CART FedEx Championship Series season opener will take place on March 11 in Monterrey, Mexico. The series will hold 21 races in seven countries around the world in 2001. Log onto Newman-Haas.com, FITTIPALDIonline.com or damatta.com (Portuguese only) for more information on the team.

-NHR-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Christian Fittipaldi , Cristiano da Matta