CHAMPCAR/CART: Gateway Ford Racing Friday Report

FORD RACING NOTES AND QUOTES PRACTICE Thursday, May 27, 1999 Motorola 300 - Gateway International Raceway MICHAEL ANDRETTI -6- K ...

FORD RACING NOTES AND QUOTES                                PRACTICE
Thursday,  May 27, 1999                          Motorola 300 - Gateway
International Raceway        

MICHAEL ANDRETTI -6- K Mart/Texaco/Havoline Ford-Cosworth - HOW MUCH OF WHAT YOU LEARNED IN YOUR LAST TEST HELPED YOU TODAY? "We had a good test here but we are still working on hitting the mark for this weekend. We still have a long way to go. We are working on setting up the car for the race rather than a fast lap. Right now the balance is good in turns three and four but we still need to find a happy medium with the car. Starting up front is important here but now a day with the competitiveness of the series you have to be good in the pits as well. That's where we were passed for the win at last years race. I think our pit guys are up to the challenge this year though. They have worked very hard over the winter."

CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI -11- Big K Ford-Cosworth - YOU WERE RIGHT AT THE TOP OF THE LEADER BOARD UNTIL JUST A FEW MINUTES BEFORE THE END OF THE SESSION . . . "Yes, I ran into some traffic at the end of the session that tripped me up a bit on a very fast lap. I am pretty happy with where we are right now with the car. We are going to start tomorrow off at the same place we ended up today which is a positive way to end today's session. Whenever you can look back and see the improvements you made the prior day you know that you are at least going in the right direction. We did spend some time experimenting with different fuel map settings for the engine that proved to be a bit helpful." WHAT AREAS OF THE CAR ARE YOU FOCUSING ON RIGHT NOW? "Right now our most important goal is getting the balance of the car right for the race on Saturday. We walk a fine line and we have to make sure we start with a very neutral car because you don't want to be fighting it during the race. If you go loose during the race you are basically done for the day."

MAX PAPIS -7- Miller Lite Ford-Cosworth - WHAT WAS THE FOCUS OF THE TEAM TODAY? YOU HAD A VERY GOOD TEST HERE A FEW WEEKS AGO. HOW MUCH DID THAT TEST HELP? "We have a bit of work still to do on the race setup but right now we are pretty comfortable going into tomorrow. We are finding our way. The speed in the morning sessions is much better than what we seem to run in the afternoon but I think that is the case for everyone. It is just so critical right now to work on making the car comfortable for the race on Saturday. If we set up the car with too much understeer and have to battle that all day on Saturday it's going to be a long race."

BRYAN HERTA -8- Shell Ford-Cosworth - "We have a lot of work to still do. We spent some time today working on our race setup but we don't seem to have a very good handle on the car yet. The car is just not coming around for us."

ADRIAN FERNANDEZ -40- Tecate/Quaker State Ford - "The car is as comfortable as it was when we were here testing. We have not quite got it figured out yet but we only have one day left to get it right so we are under the gun right now. We had some brake problems today that hurt us a bit. The bottom line is that we need to figure out the car very quickly."

P.J. JONES  -20- Visteon Ford-Cosworth - TODAY WAS A DAY OF UPS AND DOWNS
OF THE DAY YOU WERE IMPROVING AGAIN  "Today was not a good day and it was
not a bad day.  We are not getting quite what we want out of the car right
now.  The track is okay but there is not as much grip out there in the
afternoon as there was in the morning."   

MICHEL JOURDAIN, JR. -19- Herdez/Viva Mexico Ford-Cosworth - YOU SEEM TO BE FIGHTING WITH GETTING THE SETUP RIGHT . . . "Yes, we get better then we get worse but I think we are slowly going the right way. We made some improvements this afternoon which is a positive way to end the day. I am looking for a very solid qualifying run tomorrow. Although we struggled a bit today I think tomorrow will be a bit different."

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Series IndyCar