CHAMPCAR/CART: Ford Racing Milwaukee race notes

BRACK CAPTURES MILLER LITE 225 Team Rahal driver Kenny Brack led a race-high 130 laps to win his second consecutive CART event on Sunday at the Milwaukee Mile. Brack crossed the line 1.3-seconds ahead of Michael Andretti, who finished second, ...

BRACK CAPTURES MILLER LITE 225

Team Rahal driver Kenny Brack led a race-high 130 laps to win his second consecutive CART event on Sunday at the Milwaukee Mile. Brack crossed the line 1.3-seconds ahead of Michael Andretti, who finished second, while rookie Scott Dixon finished third. Rookie Bruno Junquiera came home fourth, while Adrian Fernandez rounded out the top five. Brack's teammate, Max Papis, scored his second consecutive points-paying result by finishing eighth, while Alex Tagliani scored his first points of the season with an 11th-place result.

BRACK SCORES CONSECUTIVE VICTORIES

With his consecutive victories in the Firestone Firehawk 500 and the Miller Lite 225, Kenny Brack is the first Ford-powered driver to win back-to-back CART races since Michael Andretti accomplished the feat in 1996. Andretti actually won consecutive races on two separate occasions that season, first in Milwaukee (June 2nd) and Detroit (June 9th), and then in Elkhart Lake (August 18th) and Vancouver (September 1st). Brack is also the first Ford-powered driver to win back-to-back CART events on oval tracks since 1993 when Nigel Mansell won at Michigan (August 1st) and New Hampshire (August 8th).

BRACK EXTENDS LEAD IN DRIVERS' CHAMPIONSHIP

With his victory in the Miller Lite 225, Kenny Brack (70 points) now has a 23-point advantage over Helio Castroneves (47 points) in the chase for the drivers' championship. Ford-Cosworth (73 points) also gained in the manufacturers' championship, trailing Honda (86) by 13 points and Toyota (84) by 11 points.

KENNY BRACK (#8 Shell Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 1st -

TAKE US THROUGH WHAT HAPPENED WITRH HELIO (CASTRONEVES) AND YOUR DAY OVERALL.

"Obviously it was difficult conditions because this whole weekend we didn't have much running. We had two hours on Friday and nothing more until this morning for a half-hour. I guess the cars had a little different set up and maybe teams didn't get the perfect set up, maybe we didn't either, but we did better than most today. Going into that first corner on cold tires, obviously it was difficult because you don't really know where the limit is. Helio and I got side-by-side, he came down a little bit, and we both got sideways because I had to correct a little bit. I don't know why we didn't hit. We didn't hit, but it was very, very close. On the second restart, all of a sudden Paul Tracy is gone, and I saw Michael out there and I couldn't believe how he went from 10th or whatever to second that fast, but he did. That wasn't a good sight because he's won here five times, so obviously he knows how to win here. But it was a good day because we had a good fuel strategy. I was sitting behind Michael for a while saving fuel, which was good. It was difficult dealing with lapped traffic because you get to the back of the car and that's it, you stop. I tried overtaking but that's when Michael got by me. It's very difficult in a situation like that because you can't really go forward and you're like a sitting duck with a car behind you, but it was a hard race today and I'm glad I came out on top of it."

DID YOU NOTICE THAT MICHAEL MAY HAVE HAD PROBLEMS BEHIND YOU, ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU STARTED DRAWING AWAY?

"In the end I didn't know what was going on. I thought maybe [his] fuel mileage wasn't so good, but I saw that there was something going on and I wasn't sure. I thought maybe he was saving fuel, so on the last restart I wasn't sure that he couldn't make a move on me because having so many yellow laps, if he was saving fuel he'd have more than enough for the end."

TALK ABOUT YOUR BATTLE WITH MICHAEL ANDRETTI AT THE END. YOU HAD A GREAT RESTART AFTER THE LAST CAUTION FLAG.

"Yeah, I was worried about that, but it's never good when you have a restart late in the race because if you screw up it's easy to let someone have a run at you. I made a good restart and I think maybe Michael had some problems at the end, but it was a great victory."

WAS THERE ANY DOUBT? IT LOOKED LIKE YOU HAD A STRONG CAR ALL DAY.

"I think we had a good car. No one really had very much track time here and Team Rahal's engineering guys managed to dial the car in very, very well. We were a little bit off the pace this morning, but for the race the car was great. We've got Ford power, which I think is the most powerful engine out there right now, so that helps. The car was very good in the race, and now it's time to go celebrate!"

MAX PAPIS (#7 Miller Lite Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 8th

ARE YOU SATISFIED WITH YOUR RESULT?

"No. It was one of the worst races we've had. The car was terrible. The Miller team did a very good job, but the setup of the car was really not very good and I couldn't really race. I was proud of what we did and I think that everyone on the team did an excellent job, but we just really missed it on the set up and the car was really strange."

ALEX TAGLIANI (#33 Player's/Forsythe Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 11th

YOU HAD A PRETTY GOOD DAY CONSIDERING THAT YOU STARTED 26TH.

"I would've liked to have scored more points, but we started pretty far back and it's difficult to pass people here. I think our car is still lacking some mechanical grip compared to other cars, especially in traffic. The team decided to go for a finish and make the car more reliable and I think it paid off. My guys are going to go to Detroit with less pressure because they showed that our car can last the entire race, so now we need to work on aerodynamic improvements and try to score some points on the road courses." DO YOU THINK THE CAR IS BETTER ON ROAD COURSE?

"Yeah, I think so. We've been fast for much of the season but have been plagued by an awful lot of bad luck. We just need to work our way to the front and do our best to stay there for the upcoming road course races."

MICHEL JOURDAIN, JR. (#16 Herdez Bettenhausen Ford-Cosworth) - Finished 13th

"We were running well at the end and saving fuel, but that final yellow killed us because I'm sure that a lot of cars would've had to come in and we were very good trying to save fuel to get to the end."

Regards,

Andrew Punzal CART Public Relations Manager Ford Racing/Campbell & Co. Office: (313) 336-0244 Pager: (800) 524-1432

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Bruno Junqueira , Max Papis , Adrian Fernandez , Alex Tagliani , Paul Tracy , Scott Dixon , Kenny Brack , Nigel Mansell