CHAMPCAR/CART: Denver: Team Motorola preview

INDIANAPOLIS, In.-- Team Motorola driver Michael Andretti is looking forward to his return to the rocky mountain state for this weekend's Shell Grand Prix of Denver. "I'm really looking forward to racing in Denver again," said Andretti. "It was a...

INDIANAPOLIS, In.-- Team Motorola driver Michael Andretti is looking forward to his return to the rocky mountain state for this weekend's Shell Grand Prix of Denver. "I'm really looking forward to racing in Denver again," said Andretti. "It was a great market for CART in the early '90's and our crowds were always huge and enthusiastic." Andretti is the only current CART driver to have raced Champ Cars at the previous events in 1990 and 1991. In 1990, Andretti started third and finished fifth, while in 1991 Andretti started from the pole and finished third. There will be some unique issues facing the Champ Car teams since this will be their first time racing at such a high altitude since the early '90's. "We've been working very hard with our engine partner, Honda, to optimize our Honda-Lola race package for the streets of Denver," explained general manager Kim Green. "We'll not only be facing a new circuit but the altitude will also test the teams on engine cooling and brakes."

Andretti and Team Motorola will arrive in Denver in seventh place of the championship hunt and in the final stint of four back-to-back races. Team Motorola scored a third place finish in Mid-Ohio, a 10th place finish in Elkhart Lake and an eighth place finish last weekend in Montreal. "We've scored points in every race of this stint, including a podium at Mid-Ohio," said general manager Kim Green. "With perseverance, good pit stops and heads up driving by Michael we're carrying valuable points into the last six races of the season."

Andretti and Team Motorola currently have 82 points in the championship while Cristiano daMatta continues to lead the championship with 161 points. Michael's technical partner Dario Franchitti made the jump to second place in the championship with 106 points after his win in Montreal last weekend while Bruno Junqueira is holding on in third place with 85 points. Paul Tracy, also a technical partner of Michael's, is in ninth place with 81 points.

Michael Andretti is in his 19th Champ Car season and currently leads all active Champ Car drivers in number of wins at 42, number of poles at 32, number of starts with 303 and laps led with 6,564.

Practice for the Shell Grand Prix of Denver begins on Friday morning at 10:00 a.m. MT with provisional qualifying at 2:10 p.m. MT Friday. Final qualifying will follow on Saturday at 1:45 p.m. MT. The race will be shown live on SpeedChannel Sunday, September 1 at 1:00 p.m. MT.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Bruno Junqueira , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Kim Green , Cristiano da Matta