Visteon/Patrick Racing looking to ride momentum to podium finish at German 500 JACKSON, MI - - MAY 6, 2003 - - Round 5 - - 2003 CART World Series, presented by Bridgestone and powered by Ford - Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol Servia will be...
Visteon/Patrick Racing looking to ride momentum to podium finish at German 500
JACKSON, MI - - MAY 6, 2003 - - Round 5 - - 2003 CART World Series, presented by Bridgestone and powered by Ford - Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol Servia will be looking to ride the momentum of Monday's fourth place showing at Brands Hatch in Kent, England to a podium finish this weekend in the German 500 at EuroSpeedway Lausitz in Lausitz, Germany.
Servia, who piloted the #20 Visteon/Patrick Racing entry, which is powered by Ford/Cosworth and uses a Lola chassis and Bridgestone tires, to the team's first top-five showing of the 2003 season at Brands Hatch, is currently in 12th place in the championship standings with 14 points. He will be in a strong position at EuroSpeedway to equal, or improve, on that performance and move up in the point standings because of some rules that CART has implemented.
CART rules for the two European races require that "the race car configuration for the EuroSpeedway race is the same as the race car as qualified at Brands Hatch". As a result Visteon/Patrick Racing chose to run a low downforce setup on the Brands Hatch road course. While the lack of downforce did not hurt the team in England, where Servia qualified fourth and finished fourth, it should be a key benefit on the two-mile EuroSpeedway oval.
"I think the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team is in very good shape heading into the German 500," Servia began. "We have some momentum after our fourth place finish at Brands Hatch, but, the most important thing is that we ran a low downforce setup in England," he noted. "The rules we are using in Europe for these two races require you to use the same setup in Germany that you used in England. The low downforce setup we used at Brands Hatch should benefit us on the EuroSpeedway oval where it will be key to getting the maximum speed out of the #20 Visteon/Patrick Racing car," Servia explained.
The 28-year-old Spaniard has also shown that he is very competitive on the EuroSpeedway oval and, in fact, on ovals in general. In his only previous start at EuroSpeedway, in 2001, Servia qualified 20th, but battle his way to a fifth place
finish. Additionally, of his seven career top-five finishes four have come on ovals (fourth, Rockingham - 2002; fifth, St. Louis - 2000, Germany - 2001 and Fontana - 2002) including two of his three top-five performances with Visteon/Patrick Racing (fourth, Rockingham - 2002; Fontana - 2002).
"I really enjoyed racing at EuroSpeedway the last time we were there. It is one of the best oval tracks," Servia said. "In 2001, I had a good car for the race and we had a good strategy. We were running a perfect race and I would have finished on the podium because a couple of cars ahead of me had to pit for fuel. But, then Alex had his accident," he noted.
Servia went on to say, "I like racing on ovals. Throughout my CART career I have had some very good performances on ovals. I like the fact that the corners are fast and there is a premium on getting the setup right. I would be bored racing just on ovals. That is the thing I like about CART.you race on both ovals and road courses."
The Brands Hatch race will be televised tape delayed on CBS on Saturday, May 10, at 1:00 PM (ET). The German 500 race will be televised on CBS, same day tape delay, on May 11 at 1:00 PM (ET). Speed Channel will air the German 500 qualifying, same day tape delay, on Saturday, May 10 at 4:00 PM (ET).
For background, statistical information, releases, notes, quotes plus updates on race weekends, go to (www.patrickracing.com).