LEXINGTON, Ohio (August 11, 2002)-- Team Motorola and driver Michael Andretti captured their third podium of the season today with a third place finish at the 2.258-mile road course at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Â "Today was a good day," said...
LEXINGTON, Ohio (August 11, 2002)-- Team Motorola and driver Michael Andretti captured their third podium of the season today with a third place finish at the 2.258-mile road course at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. "Today was a good day," said Andretti after the 92-lap race. "The Team Motorola guys did a great job in the pits and we just hung in there all day."
Andretti started today's event in eighth position and quickly gained two positions on the opening lap. Tenacity, good pit work and attrition eventually led the No. 39 entry to the top three where Andretti ran the last 15 laps of the race and eventually finished. "We just hung in there today and kept pushing it as hard as we could," explained Andretti. "And the good thing is our efforts paid off with a podium finish."
Pole sitter Patrick Carpentier was today's race winner after leading all 92 laps of the event. Christian Fittipaldi, who coincidentally started second, finished second and Michael rounded out the top three on the podium. Today's third place finish earned Michael 14 points and gives him a total of 74 points and sixth place in the championship race.
Andretti's technical partners Paul Tracy and Dario Franchitti weren't as fortunate as Andretti in today's event. Both partners had mechanical failures early in the event leading to an 18th place finish for Tracy and a 17th place finish for Franchitti. Cristiano daMatta continues to lead the championship with 122 points, while Patrick Carpentiers' victory, pole and provisional pole points this weekend have moved him into second place with 95 points. Bruno Junqueira rounds out the top three in the championship hunt with 86 points. Franchitti is now in fourth place with 84 points and Tracy is in eighth place with 68 points.
Team Motorola will now return to their shop in Indianapolis and begin preparations for the Motorola 220 to be held on August 18 in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.
Michael Andretti -- #39 Honda-Lola-Bridgestone
"Today was a good day. We just stayed with it and pushed it and pushed it harder and tried to hang in there and not make any mistakes and it paid off with a podium finish. The Team Motorola guys did a great job in the pits today. If you have a car that's halfway decent and a starting position that is halfway decent, I think you can turn it into a podium finish nearly every time. That's what we did today and hopefully we can continue to do that the rest of the year. "
Laps Led: 0
Laps Completed: 92 of 92
Points Earned: 14 for 74 total, 6th in Championship
Today was Michael's 301st start of his career.
In 2001, Michael started 18th and finished 26th in this race.
Today is the 3rd podium for Team Motorola this season.
Michael has won in Mid-Ohio on two occasions, 1991 and 1992.
Michael leads all active Champ Car drivers with 301 race starts, 42 wins, 32 poles and 6,564 laps led.