CHAMPCAR/CART: Fontana Fast Facts

FAST FACTS FOR THE MARLBORO 500 PRESENTED BY TOYOTA WHAT: Marlboro 500 Presented by Toyota. WHERE: California Speedway, Fontana, California. WHEN: Thursday-Sunday, Oct. 28-31. SUPPORT EVENTS: PPG-Dayton Indy Lights Championship; NASCAR ...


WHAT: Marlboro 500 Presented by Toyota. WHERE: California Speedway, Fontana, California. WHEN: Thursday-Sunday, Oct. 28-31. SUPPORT EVENTS: PPG-Dayton Indy Lights Championship; NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. CART SCHEDULE (All Times PT): THURSDAY, OCTOBER 28 - Indy Lights practice, 9-9:45 a.m.; Indy Lights practice, 10:45-11:45 a.m.; Indy Lights practice, 3:30 p.m.-4:45 p.m. FRIDAY, OCTOBER 29 - Indy Lights practice, 9:15-9:45 a.m.; Champ Car rookie drivers practice, 10-10:30 a.m.; Champ Car practice, 10:30 a.m.-noon; Champ Car practice, 3-4 p.m.; Indy Lights qualifying, 4:15-5:15 p.m. SATURDAY, OCTOBER 30 - Champ Car practice, 8-9 a.m.; Champ Car qualifying, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. SUNDAY, OCTOBER 31 - Champ Car warm-up, 9-9:30 a.m.; Indy Lights Race, 9:50 a.m.; Grid Champ Cars, 11:15 a.m.; Marlboro 500 Presented by Toyota, Noon. BROADCAST: TV-ESPN, live, 3 p.m. EDT (and in 195 countries worldwide). RADIO-CART Radio Network. PRE-RACE PROGRAMMING: Marlboro 500 Presented by Toyota Qualifying, 12:30 a.m. ET Sunday, ESPN2; "CART 2Day," 11 a.m. ET Sunday, ESPN2. DEFENDING CHAMPION: Jimmy Vasser. DEFENDING POLESITTER: Scott Pruett. TRACK LAYOUT: 2.029-mile superspeedway oval. RACE LENGTH: 250 laps, 500 miles.

TRACK RECORDS: Qualifying (one lap) - 1997, Mauricio Gugelmin, 240.942 mph (30.316 seconds). Race (500 miles, Michigan Speedway) - 1990, Al Unser Jr., 189.727 mph. (500 miles, California Speedway) - 1997, Mark Blundell, 166.575 mph.

RACE NUMBER: 20 of 20 in the FedEx Championship Series.

FedEx CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES POINTS LEADERS: 1. Dario Franchitti, 209 points; 2. Juan Montoya, 200; 3. Paul Tracy, 161; 4. Michael Andretti, 151; 5. Max Papis, 133.


Jimmy Vasser (Target Honda Reynard) claimed the $1 million winner's prize and clinched runner-up honors in the 1998 FedEx Championship Series championship in the process by driving to victory in the season-ending Marlboro 500 Presented by Toyota at California Speedway. Vasser earned his second $1 million prize in three years with the victory, which joined his 1996 win in The Inaugural U.S. 500 on his list of big-money paydays. A slingshot pass of Greg Moore (Player's/Indeck Mercedes Reynard) heading into the last of 250 laps brought Vasser his third victory of the season and the eighth of his career. He led a race-high 63 laps and finished 0.360 seconds ahead of Moore in an event which featured 24 lead changes among seven drivers. Alex Zanardi, who had already clinched his second consecutive FedEx Championship Series title, finished third. Vasser's victory allowed him to overtake Dario Franchitti (KOOL Honda Reynard) for second-place in the championship. Franchitti finished 22nd due to engine problems after completing 112 laps. The season concluded with Zanardi as champion with a record 285 PPG Cup points, followed by Vasser with 169 and Franchitti with 160.

Vital Race Statistics

Time of race: 3 hours, 17 minutes, 54.369 seconds. Average speed: 153.785 mph. Margin of victory: 0.360 seconds. Caution flags: 9 for 64 laps.

Lap leaders: Jimmy Vasser, 63 laps; Greg Moore, 59; Michael Andretti, 44; Mauricio Gugelmin, 40; Paul Tracy, 36; Richie Hearn, 7; Mark Blundell, 1.

MARLBORO 500 PRESENTED BY TOYOTA RACE HISTORY (18 events, 2 at current venue)

Year            Race Winner             Pole Winner
1981            Pancho Carter           Tom Sneva
1982            Gordon Johncock         Mario Andretti
1983            John Paul Jr.           Teo Fabi
1984            Mario Andretti          Mario Andretti
1985            Emerson Fittipaldi      Bobby Rahal
1986            Johnny Rutherford       Rick Mears
1987            Michael Andretti        Michael Andretti
1988            Danny Sullivan          Rick Mears
1989            Michael Andretti        Emerson Fittipaldi  
1990            Al Unser Jr.            Emerson Fittipaldi 
1991            Rick Mears              Rick Mears
1992            Scott Goodyear          Mario Andretti
1993            Nigel Mansell           Mario Andretti
1994            Scott Goodyear          Nigel Mansell
1995            Scott Pruett            Parker Johnstone
1996            Andre Ribeiro           Jimmy Vasser
1997            Mark Blundell           Mauricio Gugelmin
1998            Jimmy Vasser            Scott Pruett
All-time victories                      All-time pole positions
Michael Andretti        2               Mario Andretti          4
Scott Goodyear          2               Rick Mears              3
Pancho Carter           1               Emerson Fittipaldi      2
Gordon Johncock         1               Tom Sneva               1
John Paul Jr.           1               Teo Fabi                1
Mario Andretti          1               Bobby Rahal             1
Emerson Fittipaldi      1               Michael Andretti        1
Johnny Rutherford       1               Nigel Mansell           1
Danny Sullivan          1               Parker Johnstone        1
Al Unser Jr.            1               Jimmy Vasser            1
Rick Mears              1               Mauricio Gugelmin       1
Nigel Mansell           1               Scott Pruett            1
Scott Pruett            1
Andre Ribeiro           1       
Mark Blundell           1
Jimmy Vasser            1

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Al Unser Jr. , Scott Goodyear , Michael Andretti , Jimmy Vasser , Max Papis , Bobby Rahal , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Alex Zanardi , Mauricio Gugelmin , Nigel Mansell , Scott Pruett , Mark Blundell , Richie Hearn , Mario Andretti , Rick Mears , Tom Sneva , Danny Sullivan , Emerson Fittipaldi , Gordon Johncock , Pancho Carter , John Paul , Teo Fabi , Andre Ribeiro , Greg Moore , Johnny Rutherford , Al Unser