AdriÃ¡n FernÃ¡ndez, Owner/Driver -- ...
Adrián Fernández, Owner/Driver -- #51 Tecate/Quaker State/Telmex Honda/Reynard/Firestone:
"It is a shame qualifying got rained out. It's frustrating and it's sad for the fans but it is an issue that you are going to face on ovals, and we've been lucky this year compared to last year. You just have to be patient and not let the weather affect you. Your starting position here really doesn't matter that much because it is such a long race and so much can happen. My car has been good all weekend, and that gives me confidence for tomorrow. My car is good and so is Shinji's, so we just hope that we can keep the right balance for the last 50 miles so the car is fast. We have very limited laps for tomorrow morning, and it was good that we basically concentrated on the race setup this morning. We tried a few things that we feel work well. We have a good race car."
FAST FACTS: Is the only owner/driver in the current CART field... will be making his 135th career Champ Car start at Michigan...his best oval start in 2001 was sixth at Nazareth... best oval finish to date this season was fifth at Milwaukee...his best road/street course start in 2001 was second at Cleveland... his best road/street course finish this year was third at Toronto...recorded his last win at the 2000 Honda Indy 300 in Australia...has seven career Champ Car wins^Åfinished second in the championship last season... fifth most-winning driver in the current CART field.
Shinji Nakano, #52 Avex/Alpine Honda/Reynard/Firestone:
"We were one of the few drivers that made a qualifying run. The balance of the car was perfect. We just had a little too much downforce. The important thing at this track is to have a good car for the race. For tomorrow, we just need to be patient and take care of the equipment ... the tires, the engine, the gearbox and everything. I^Òve never finished a 500-mile race. Tomorrow will be a good learning experience for me and hopefully we will be able to make it to the end. I have a good car, so we'll wait and see."
FAST FACTS: Will be making his 27th career Champ Car start at Michigan... his best oval qualifying in 2001 was fifth at Texa...best oval finish to date this season was eighth in Motegi...his best road/street course start in 2001 was ninth at Detroit...his best road/street course finish this year was ninth in Toronto...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.