CHAMPCAR/CART: Mexico City: Team Australia preview

POWER AND PAGENAUD PUMPED FOR PODIUM IN MEXICO Team Australia Champ Car drivers Will Power and Simon Pagenaud have their sights set on the podium in the Gran Premio Tecate at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City this weekend. Both...

POWER AND PAGENAUD PUMPED FOR PODIUM IN MEXICO

Team Australia Champ Car drivers Will Power and Simon Pagenaud have their sights set on the podium in the Gran Premio Tecate at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City this weekend.

Both Team Australia drivers have their own reasons to be more determined than ever to make this weekend's event a strong one for the Aussie Vineyards-backed team, the final event of the 14-race 2007 Champ Car World Series.

Power earned his fourth pole position for the season at the last event, the Lexmark Indy 300 on the Gold Coast in Australia. The Australian was keen to earn a win on home soil at the Surfers Paradise street circuit, only for his race to turn sour with an incident in pit lane.

Despite racing with two hairline fractures in his left wrist as a result of a crash during last month's Lexmark Indy 300, Power will charge with everything he has got this weekend in Mexico to put the heartbreak of the Gold Coast behind him with a strong finish.

For Pagenaud this weekend represents the final chance for the Frenchman to record a podium finish in his debut season in Champ Car.

It was at this race last season that Power scored his first Champ Car podium, also in the final race of the season. After six top five finishes from 13 races this year, Pagenaud could potentially earn the impressive statistic of a top five in 50 percent of his starts in his rookie season with a top five in Mexico.

But while the Frenchman has one eye on consistency and the Rookie of the Year standings, which see him only seven points away from the runner-up position, it's a debut podium result that Pagenaud is pushing for in the #15 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01 this weekend.

WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY --

Will Power -- #5 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01

"Mexico City is a track I really enjoy," said Power.

"This will be my third time there. Last year I got my first podium in Champ Car there.

"After the last couple of races we are definitely due for a bit of good luck and I would be disappointed not to have strong finish to the season.

"We found some really good things when we tested the Aussie Vineyards car in Sebring that I think will work for this track, so I expect to be strong in the first session and look to do the same this year and end the season on a high in Mexico."

Simon Pagenaud -- #15 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01

"I'm really looking forward to the Mexico City race," said Pagenaud.

"In 2005, Mexico City was my very first Champ Car race that I saw live, so it really stood out in my mind and to get to race there this year for the first time, is extremely exciting.

"I love the city and the fans seem to be great, so it will be very interesting to see how we do. The last couple of races Team Australia and the Aussie Vineyards car has really improved and I am looking to have a good result this weekend and I can't wait to get back to a road course."

Derrick Walker -- Team Australia Co-Owner

"There are still a lot of points on the table in the championship for us to grab in Mexico City and we need to be on our game from the minute we roll it off of the truck to when we leave there," said Walker.

"So maximum points and to a lesser extent, coming out of Surfer's where we sadly let our Australian fans down badly, we need to give them first and second there for Team Australia to reinforce the reason why they supported us so well in Australia."

Craig Gore -- Team Australia Co-Owner

"Both Will and Simon are really pumped for this last race of the season," said Gore.

"Will obviously wants to put the Gold Coast race behind him and he knows the best possible way to do that is with a great race in Mexico.

"We've had a good season this year and everyone in the Team Australia program is very keen to make it a strong finish to the Champ Car season in Mexico.

"Simon has had a really solid rookie year and has been up the front end of the field battling with drivers with much more experience than him at most of the races this season.

"I know that Simon wants a podium finish really badly and all of the hard-working Team Australia crew are just as keen for him to break into the top three in Mexico."

-credit: team australia

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Will Power , Simon Pagenaud