CHAMPCAR/CART: Mauricio Gugelmin finishes second at Nazareth

(Nazareth, Pa) -- PacWest Racing's Mauricio Gugelmin put himself back into the hunt for this year's FedEx Championship Series crown after finishing second in the Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix at the Nazareth Speedway in Pennsylvania ...

(Nazareth, Pa) -- PacWest Racing's Mauricio Gugelmin put himself back into the hunt for this year's FedEx Championship Series crown after finishing second in the Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix at the Nazareth Speedway in Pennsylvania today.

Gugelmin, who started 12th in his #17 Nextel PacWest Mercedes-Benz, patiently made his way through the field -- staying out of on-track incidents and conserving valuable fuel.

At the end of the race Gugelmin followed Gil de Ferran across the line after a four-lap sprint which also saw Team Rahal's Kenny Brack finish third.

The podium finish was Gugelmin's fourth in CART competition and his best result since winning at Vancouver in 1997. That same year he also had second-place finishes at Long Beach and Elkhart Lake.

While members of the PacWest team were celebrating Gugelmin's trophy-winning performance their thoughts we also with #18 Motorola PacWest Mercedes-Benz driver Mark Blundell who watched the finish of the race from the CART Medical Center.

Blundell was involved in a major accident on lap 167 after being hit from behind by Helio Castroneves - he was later released with some minor bruising to his upper back.

The win was big one for de Ferran who gave his team owner Roger Penske his 100th win in CART competition -- de Ferran was also the fifth different winner of the five races so far this season.

Gugelmin's podium finish was also the best result this season for Mercedes-Benz and comes two weeks after the Brazilian set the best qualifying result (7th) of the season for the manufacturer in Japan.

MAURICIO GUGELMIN - # 17 NEXTEL PACWEST MERCEDES-BENZ -- 2ND

"This is a great result for everyone in the PacWest team who has worked so hard for so long," said Gugelmin.

"We made tremendous mileage early in the race and had a little in reserve at the end when it counted.

"This was only a one day event so there were not the Friday and Saturday sessions to put the normal amount of rubber down and you had to be careful. The smart ones made it to the end.

"My crew did a great job in the pits and we picked up positions on each stop.

"It is important for us to go on from here and for everyone to realize that we can win races. I think we have been unlucky a couple of times this year, but we need to use this as the turning point."

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Gil de Ferran , Mauricio Gugelmin , Kenny Brack , Mark Blundell , Roger Penske