CHAMPCAR/CART: Fontana: Team Motorola preview

INDIANAPOLIS, IN -- Team Motorola and driver Michael Andretti are eager to get things started at California Speedway. This weekend's 500-mile event is the penultimate round of the 2002 CART FedEx Championship and for CART's winningest active ...

INDIANAPOLIS, IN -- Team Motorola and driver Michael Andretti are eager to get things started at California Speedway. This weekend's 500-mile event is the penultimate round of the 2002 CART FedEx Championship and for CART's winningest active driver; a victory on the 2.029-mile oval would be divine retribution

"Team Motorola has had several opportunities for top-three finishes lately," says Andretti.  "Unfortunately we haven't been able to capitalize on any of these situations and it's been a bit frustrating for all of us.  I'm looking forward to getting to Fontana and to having a perfectly trouble-free weekend. All season it's been a little thing goes wrong here, a little thing there, but my fingers are crossed that everything just goes smooth for us. I've started on the front row in Fontana before, I want to do it again but take it all the way to the win."

Andretti's best finish in Fontana was seventh in 2001.

"I never thought I'd be glad to leave Australia," says Team Motorola Team Manager, Kim Green. "Amazing country to race in, but it was a very wet country last weekend.  I'm hoping that the rain holds off for this weekend's race in Fontana. Team Motorola has worked very hard and turning our cars around into superspeedway machines is no small feat when you're traveling halfway around the world to do it.  I've got a lot of respect for the Team Motorola crew and the work that they do in this type of situation. They deserve a win this weekend."

Andretti and Team Motorola are currently ninth in the championship with 94 points. Cristiano da Matta, who clinched the championship in Miami, has 219 points, while Bruno Junqueira is second with 144 points.  Andretti's technical partner Dario Franchitti is third with 135 points while Franchitti's teammate Paul Tracy is eighth with 101 points.

Michael Andretti is in his 19th Champ Car season and currently leads all active Champ Car drivers in number of wins with 42, number of poles - 32, number of starts -- 307 and laps led - 6,570.

The first practice session for The 500 will be held on Friday at 10:00 a.m PT. with provisional qualifying on Friday afternoon at 2:15 p.m. PT.  Practice will continue on Saturday at 8:30 a.m. PT with final qualifying set to begin at 11:30 a.m. PT. On Sunday, the race will be shown live on Speed Channel beginning at 3:30 p.m. ET.

-tm-

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