Tony Kanaan and his ...
Tony Kanaan and his #55 Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing Honda-Reynard clocked the fastest time in practice today for Saturday's German 500. Kanaan turned a lap of 34.624 seconds (an average of 210.340 mph) over the EuroSpeedway's unique triangular 2-mile oval during a two-hour session that began late this afternoon. It was the only practice session of the opening two days of scheduled practice, which were plagued by rain showers from Thursday morning through noontime today.
Right behind Kanaan on the timesheets today was teammate Alex Zanardi and the #66 Pioneer-WorldCom/Mo Nunn Racing Honda-Reynard, the only other competitor to break the 35-second mark. Zanardi's fast lap came in at 34.991 seconds (208.134 mph) and beat the next car in the order, that of Patrick Carpentier, by almost three-tenths of a second. Carpentier's best lap was a 35.261-second (206.540-mph) effort that was third best of the day.
Despite their efforts, Kanaan will start 10th in Saturday's race while Zanardi will start 22nd as CART officials announced Thursday that the starting grid would be determined by the current driver point standings. Race time Saturday is 1:30 p.m. local time (7:30 a.m. EDT) with a live broadcast set for ESPN. Pre-race ceremonies will commemorate the victims of this past week's tragedies in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C.
"Obviously, it's been a very sad situation at home and for all of us here this past week, so even though the day on the racetrack went very smoothly for our team, we're not sitting here celebrating. Everybody in America is determined to get on with life. Getting back to work is great therapy for us, and watching us race this weekend will hopefully be therapy for everyone back home. The fans here seem to feel the same way. They were very patient waiting around for us to finally get out onto the track. Hopefully we'll put on a good show for everybody. We definitely have a good car. It's a shame we're not going to qualify, but starting according to the points is what we agreed to do. We go t comfortable with the track right away. It doesn't take long at all when you have a good car. Tomorrow can be a whole different day, but if the weather stays good between now and then, we'll be in great shape. God bless America."