PATRICK CARPENTIER WILL START FIFTH IN TOMORROW'S MOTOROLA 300 AT HATEWAY INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY. Carpentier, who led all drivers powered by Ford-Cosworth, lapped the 1.270-mile track in 25.516 seconds or 179.182 miles per hour. Target Chip Ganassi...
PATRICK CARPENTIER WILL START FIFTH IN TOMORROW'S MOTOROLA 300 AT HATEWAY INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY. Carpentier, who led all drivers powered by Ford-Cosworth, lapped the 1.270-mile track in 25.516 seconds or 179.182 miles per hour. Target Chip Ganassi Racing swept the front row as Juan Montoya claimed the pole (25.353 seconds; 180.334 mph) while his teammate, Jimmy Vasser, will start second (25.368 seconds; 180.227 mph). Paul Tracy will start third (25.500 seconds; 179.294 mph) while his teammate, Dario Franchitti, will start fourth (25.514 seconds; 179.196 mph). Adrian Fernandez will start 7th, Carpentier's teammate, Alex Tagliani, qualified 8th while defending race champion Michael Andretti will start the race 16th after posting a qualifying time of 25.932 seconds (176.307 mph).
PATRICK CARPENTIER (#32 Player's Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 5th - "We had a little bit of a push in the car and to be really fast here you need the car to be a little bit loose but not too much. But hey, us drivers always complain and think we've never got the perfect car. It was a good run and the team did a great job. We're starting up in the top 10 so it should be a good race. I'm going to watch the World of Outlaws tonight to warm up before coming to race tomorrow (laughter).
YOU'VE BEEN FAST ON THE OVALS AND STARTED NEAR THE FRONT. CAN YOU GET TO THE FRONT TOMORROW? - "I hope so because we're getting really close. In Chicago the halfshaft broke and sent me into the wall, but if we finish this one tomorrow I want to be in the front. I think we can do it because the guys are so fast on the pit stops."
ADRIAN FERNANDEZ (#40 Tecate/Quaker State Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 7th - YOU'VE BEEN RUNNING VERY WELL OVER THE LAST FEW WEEKS AND ARE STILL IN CONTENTION FOR THE CHAMPIONSHIP. - "Yeah it's very tight and I can't remember a year when it was so competitive. These last three or four races count a lot and we can't drop out. We have to finish. We need to finish in the top five in all of them with hopefully some wins."
ALEX TAGLIANI (#33 Player's Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 8th - HOW WAS YOUR QUALIFYING RUN? - "It was pretty good. We did a change in the car for qualifying and it was loose, but this morning and for most of the weekend the car was understeering so it was the first time it got loose on the track. We didn't carry as much speed into turns three and four because it came out loose in turns one and two, so it's going to be a long race."
YOU'VE BEEN PRETTY SUCCESSFUL ON THE OVALS THIS YEAR. - "Yeah, the car is real fast and we just need to some more reliability and stay there at the end of the race. We have some good strategies, we have some good guys around so I think the pit stops will be an issue, but we need to be around at the end of this long race."
ROBERTO MORENO (#20 Visteon Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 12th - "Qualifying wasn't as fast as this morning, a little bit slower but it's still quite a good car and we almost repeated what I did this morning. We had a small push exiting the corners and I think the tire pressures weren't exactly the same as they were this morning."
HOW IMPORTANT WILL YOUR PIT STOPS AND STRATEGY BE TOMORROW? - "Strategy is always very important and I think all those pit stops are related to the strategy we use. The crew has been fantastic and I've been very, very pleased with the strategies we've used in the races."
KENNY BRACK (#8 Shell Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 13th - DOESN'T LOOK LIKE YOU WERE TOO HAPPY WITH YOUR RUN. - "No, not at all but that's the way it goes and we'll have to make the best of it."
TELL ME ABOUT YOUR RUN. - "Well we had a good car this morning but this afternoon it pushed too much and it can't get through the corner."
CAN YOU MAKE IT UP TO THE FRONT TOMORROW? - "You know it's my first time here so I don't know, but that's what I certainly hope."
MAX PAPIS (#7 Miller Lite Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 15th - WHAT HAPPENED? - "We pushed. We pushed big time all the way in qualifying. It was a lot warmer than this morning and I was not expecting that at all. I mean I went in as hot as this morning and she just didn't want to go around the turn. I'm glad we worked on the racecar but it's a big disappointment for me because I was sure that if it wasn't first it would be maybe top four. This year has been tough for us." WHAT ABOUT TOMORROW? - "Tomorrow is another deal. It's just disappointing."
MICHAEL ANDRETTI (#6 Big Kmart/Texaco-Havoline Ford Cosworth) - Qualified 16th - "I haven't had a smile on an oval in a long time. We just can't seem to get the handling right for qualifying, but the car felt alright under race conditions but starting at the back all the time is no fun."
ESPECIALLY HERE WHERE IT'S A TOUGH PLACE TO PASS. "It's a little tough, but it's a long race, it's 300 miles. Hopefully it'll be long enough to give us a chance to get to the front."
WHAT ABOUT TOMORROW AND YOUR STRATEGY? - "As far back as we are it could be one of those things where we have to gamble again. I hate doing that because you lose a lot more than you win, but we'll just have to see what happens."
ALEX BARRON (#19 Sports Today Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 17th - "We had a pretty good handle on the set up here, and I'm pretty happy. We touched a little bit going into turn three, but I think we have a good racecar. I'm looking forward to tomorrow."
WHAT'S YOUR PLAN FOR TOMORROW'S RACE? - "Whomever has the best handle on their car at the end I think is going to be the best off. I just hope that we can stay on the lead lap and have that car at the end of the race."
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI (#11 Big Kmart/Route 66 Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 18th - TELL US ABOUT THE RUN. ARE YOU HAPPY WITH THE CAR? - "No, I'm not really happy. There was a lot on the car. By no means were we going to set the world on fire today, but on top of that on the second lap for some reason I had a big fuel pressure problem. I came out of turn four and the engine was misfiring so actually I lost time on my second lap and my splits were quicker in the middle of the second lap. I think I could've done a 25.7 or maybe a 25.8, but we lost out on it."
HOW'S YOUR CAR GOING TO BE FOR TOMORROW? - "Well tomorrow's race is completely different. It's a long race and we'll see what happens. Three hundred miles around this place is going to be a lot."
TARSO MARQUES (#34 Panasonic Ford-Cosworth) - Qualified 24th - "The car was better this morning and much better than yesterday, but it is still too far off. We're working very hard on the set up but we just don't have enough downforce, that's what we are so slow."
WHAT CHANGES WILL YOU MAKE FOR TOMORROW? - "We don't know yet. We'll have to look at the data, but the car had a lot of push entering the corner and very loose on the exit, so we don't know."