CHAMPCAR/CART: Lexington: Ford Racing preview

MID-OHIO MARKS FIRST OF FOUR CONSECUTIVE RACES FOR CART - This weekend's race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course marks the first of four consecutive events for CART's teams and drivers that will see them go to Road America before running new events...

MID-OHIO MARKS FIRST OF FOUR CONSECUTIVE RACES FOR CART - This weekend's race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course marks the first of four consecutive events for CART's teams and drivers that will see them go to Road America before running new events in Montreal and Denver. Team Player's drivers Patrick Carpentier and Alex Tagliani, who have both scored top-five finishes in each of the last two races, hope to keep their string of recent successes intact this weekend while Team Rahal's Michel Jourdain looks to continue his string of 10 straight points-paying finishes.

FORD-COSWORTH AT MID-OHIO - Ford and Cosworth have combined for seven victories and four pole positions in the 20 Champ Car events held at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course since 1980. Johnny Rutherford won the inaugural CART race at Mid-Ohio in 1980, followed by Teo Fabi in 1983, Mario Andretti in 1984 and back-to-back victories by Bobby Rahal in 1985 and 1986. Roberto Guerrero was victorious in 1987, while Adrian Fernandez was Ford-Cosworth's most recent winner in 1998. Michael Andretti captured pole for Ford-Cosworth in 1992, followed by Nigel Mansell in 1993, Jacques Villeneuve in 1995 and Bryan Herta in 1997.

FORD-COSWORTH DRIVER NOTES -

Patrick Carpentier - Followed up his second career victory two weeks ago in Cleveland with a fifth-place finish in Vancouver. Has scored three top-10 results in four career starts at Mid-Ohio, including seventh in 1998, seventh in 2000 and third last season. Also has three career starts inside the top 10 at Mid-Ohio, qualifying ninth in both 1998 and 2000 and third a year ago. Has scored top-10 finishes this season in Mexico [seventh], Japan [fourth], Laguna Seca [fifth], Portland [fifth], Toronto [10th], Cleveland [first] and Vancouver [fifth], and is currently fourth in the championship standings with 72 points.

Mario Dominguez - Qualified 17th in Vancouver, but rebounded to score his second top-10 finish of the season [10th]. Made his first points-paying finish of the season in Japan where he came home 11th [two points]. With 10 championship points, he is currently second in the Jim Trueman Rookie of the Year standings behind Townsend Bell [19 points].

Michel Jourdain, Jr. - Spun during the second pace lap on cold tires in Vancouver, but recovered to score his ninth top-10 finish this season [fourth]. Is the only driver in the series who has scored championship points in all 10 races thus far this season, and is currently tied for third in the championship standings with 72. Has recorded top-five finishes in Monterrey [fourth], Long Beach [fifth], Japan [fifth], Milwaukee [fifth] and Vancouver [fourth]. Has made five career starts at Mid-Ohio with his best qualifying position of 14th coming in 1997 and his top finish of 15th coming in 2000.

Alex Tagliani - Qualified eighth and finished seventh two weeks ago in Vancouver to score his fourth straight top-10 result. Has seven top-10 finishes in 10 races thus far this season, and has scored championship points in six consecutive events dating back to a 10th-place finish at Laguna Seca. Currently 10th in the championship standings with 58 points. Has two top-10 finishes in two career starts at Mid-Ohio, including ninth as a rookie in 2000 [qualified 16th] and seventh last season [qualified sixth].

Jimmy Vasser - Recorded his fifth 'DNF' of the season when he spun at the beginning of the Molson Indy Vancouver two weeks ago. Has five top-10 results this season, highlighted by a second place finish in Long Beach. Currently 12th in the championship standings with 42 points. Has scored three top-five and five top-10 finishes in 10 career starts at Mid-Ohio, highlighted by second in 1996, fifth in 1997, fourth in 1999, ninth in 1995 and 10th in 1993.

COSWORTH RACING CHAMP CAR WINS - Patrick Carpentier's second career Champ Car victory in Cleveland on July 14th, 2002 was the 213th victory for Cosworth Racing in USAC- and CART-sanctioned races since it entered North American open-wheeled racing in 1976. Cosworth has won 167 CART-sanctioned races and 46 USAC-sanctioned races, including five victories in 1996 with the Ford-Cosworth XB engine during the inaugural season of the Indy Racing League [IRL]. Michael Andretti has won the most races using a Cosworth engine [25], followed by Rick Mears [20], Bobby Rahal [18], Mario Andretti [16] and Johnny Rutherford [16].

SPARK PLUGS - Michel Jourdain, Jr., is the only Champ Car driver thus far this season who has finished every race and who has scored championship points in every event ... Jourdain leads all drivers this season by completing 1,392 out of a possible 1,400 laps [99.4%].

-ford-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Jacques Villeneuve , Michael Andretti , Jimmy Vasser , Roberto Guerrero , Adrian Fernandez , Bobby Rahal , Patrick Carpentier , Alex Tagliani , Bryan Herta , Nigel Mansell , Townsend Bell , Mario Dominguez , Mario Andretti , Rick Mears , Teo Fabi , Johnny Rutherford , Michel Jourdain