CHAMPCAR/CART: Honda Cleveland Friday notes

Despite a lingering back injury, Helio Castroneves led the Honda-powered field today and finished second overall in opening CART FedEx Championship Series practice for Sunday's Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland. The Marlboro Team Penske driver ...

Despite a lingering back injury, Helio Castroneves led the Honda-powered field today and finished second overall in opening CART FedEx Championship Series practice for Sunday's Marconi Grand Prix of Cleveland.

The Marlboro Team Penske driver injured his back earlier this week while exercising, and ran only eight laps during the morning session before requiring treatment from the CART medical staff. In the afternoon practice, he ran approximately half of the 90-minute session and will receive additional treatment prior to qualifying tomorrow.

The Team KOOL Green duo of Paul Tracy and Dario Franchitti rounded out the top five today, with owner/driver Adrian Fernandez just behind. Gil de Ferran completed the top ten after switching to his backup car midway through the afternoon practice; while Shinji Nakano, Tony Kanaan and Michael Andretti all turned times within five-hundredths of a second of one another.

Helio Castroneves (#3 Marlboro Team Penske Honda) 2nd quickest in practice today: "We didn't get much track time this morning because of my back spasm. But the car was good from the start of the afternoon session and we continued to improve it. The CART medical guys are going to continue to treat my back and I'm going to rest tonight. I'm looking forward to getting back at it tomorrow."

-Honda

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Gil de Ferran , Adrian Fernandez , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Tony Kanaan , Shinji Nakano
Teams Team Penske