KENNY BRACK WINS THE FIRESTONE FIREHAWK 500 IN JAPAN Team Rahal driver Kenny Brack led 75 of 201 laps of the Firestone Firehawk 500 en route to his first career CART FedEx Championship Series victory in Motegi, Japan. Brack, who had been the ...
KENNY BRACK WINS THE FIRESTONE FIREHAWK 500 IN JAPAN
Team Rahal driver Kenny Brack led 75 of 201 laps of the Firestone Firehawk 500 en route to his first career CART FedEx Championship Series victory in Motegi, Japan. Brack, who had been the dominant driver through the first four events of the season with four front row starts and two top five finishes, held off a charging Helio Castroneves, who finished second, to claim his first Champ Car win. Tony Kanaan finished 3rd, followed by Christian Fittipaldi in 4th and Jimmy Vasser in 5th. Brack's teammate, Max Papis, finished 6th to record his best result of the season, while Michel Jourdain Jr. also posted his best finish of 2001 by coming home in 11th. Other finishers powered by Ford-Cosworth included Oriol Servia (15th - running), Patrick Carpentier (19th - mechanical), Bryan Herta (21st - mechanical) and Alex Tagliani (22nd - mechanical).
FORD-COSWORTH CONTINUES ITS WINNING STREAK AT MOTEGI
For the fourth consecutive year, Ford-Cosworth returns to the United States following a victory in Japan. Adrian Fernandez won the first two events held at the Twin Ring Motegi in 1998 and 1999 and Michael Andretti claimed victory last season, while Kenny Brack's inaugural CART victory today preserved Ford-Cosworth's unbeaten streak at the egg-shaped oval circuit.
BRACK TAKES THE LEAD IN THE POINTS RACE
By virtue of his victory at Motegi, Kenny Brack climbs atop the CART championship points race as the series heads to Milwaukee in two weeks. Brack leads all drivers with 49 points, followed by Helio Castroneves with 46 points, and Cristiano da Matta, Paul Tracy and Jimmy Vasser, all of whom are tied with 40 points. However, Ford-Cosworth (52 points) still trails Honda (71 points) and Toyota (70 points) in the chase for the CART manufacturers' championship.
BLUE OVAL SUCCESS
With Kenny Brack's win at the Twin Ring Motegi, Ford-Cosworth continues to be a strong contender on oval circuits. Consider that the engine manufacturer has now scored six victories and had at least one driver appear on the podium in each of the last 12 CART oval events dating back to the final race of the 1999 season at the California Speedway.
The winner of the race at Motegi has never started worse than 8th (Fernandez 2nd in '98; 4th in '99, Andretti 8th in '00 and Brack 6th in '01) ... Michel Jourdain, Jr.'s 11th-place finish was his best of the season and earned him his first championship points of the 2001 campaign ... despite winning all four CART races ever held at Motegi, Ford-Cosworth has never won from the pole ... Max Papis' 6th-place finish at Motegi was his best result in three previous attempts (8th in 2000).