Adrian Fernandez, Owner/Driver -- ...
Adrian Fernandez, Owner/Driver -- #51 Tecate/Quaker State/Telmex Honda/Reynard/Firestone:
Morning Practice Session: 21st 71.018 = 113.447 mph
Afternoon Practice Session: 15th 70.530 = 114.232 mph
"We had a problem this morning. One of our engines exploded and that really took track time away from us. We had to switch to the backup car, and that's the one we are running. We made some changes for the afternoon, and I think we improved the car a little bit. We are still about a second and a half behind, but we managed to close the gap some. We are suffering with a lot of push and we need to fix that to carry more speed. We are going to try different things for tomorrow and hopefully it will be better."
FAST FACTS: Is the only owner/driver in the current CART field will be making his 143rd career Champ Car start at Laguna Seca...his best road/street course start in 2001 was second at Cleveland...his best road/street course finish this year was third at Toronto and Elkhart Lake...his best oval start in 2001 was third at Chicago...best oval finish to date this season was fifth at Milwaukee recorded...his last win at the 2000 Honda Indy 300 in Australiahas seven career Champ Car wins...finished second in the championship last season...fifth most-winning driver in the current CART field.
Shinji Nakano, #52 Avex/Alpine Honda/Reynard/Firestone:
Morning Practice Session: 29th 71.460 = 112.746 mph
Afternoon Practice Session: 14th 70.518 = 114.252 mph
"My car was getting better towards the end of the session. We had a gearbox problem at the beginning and had to switch to the spare car. It had the same setup and we just changed a few things which made the car better at the end. It is still not good enough. The main problem is just overall grip and too much push."
FAST FACTS: Will be making his 35th career Champ Car start at Laguna Seca ...his best road/street course start in 2001 was ninth at Detroit...his best road/street course finish this year was ninth in Toronto...his best oval qualifying in 2001 was fifth at Texas...best oval finish to date this season was eighth in Motegi...is in his sophomore season of Champ Car competition with four top-10 finishes to his credit...has the benefit of a teammate for the first time in his CART career...hails from Formula One with 33 F1 starts and nine top-10 finishes in two years of competition.
Tom Anderson, Owner/Team Manager:
"Today was a day where both sides had a mechanical, but two different mechanicals, and that took away some time. I don't think we came with the ideal setup, but probably only the guy on the top did anyway. The engineers and the drivers made good improvements this afternoon, and we are close enough now to make some good gains. We have good information for the long hours the engineers will be working this evening, and should have a reasonable qualifying tomorrow. I'm happy to see the Indy Lights here because they will be putting down some Firestone rubber before the first qualifying session, so the two groups for qualifying tomorrow will be closer than they were in Houston. That is a big plus."