JACKSON, MI - - SEPTEMBER 25, 2003 - - Round 16 - - 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford - Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol Servia has plenty of momentum as he heads into this weekend's Grand Prix Americas on the...
JACKSON, MI - - SEPTEMBER 25, 2003 - - Round 16 - - 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford - Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol Servia has plenty of momentum as he heads into this weekend's Grand Prix Americas on the temporary street circuit in Miami, Florida in search of his first career CART victory.
In the last two races Servia has piloted the #20 Visteon/Patrick Racing entry, which is powered by Ford-Cosworth and uses a Lola chassis with Bridgestone tires, to a career high tying second place finish at Montreal and third place showing at Denver. This is the first time in his CART career that Servia has finished on the podium in consecutive races. The talented 29-year-old resident of Miami, Florida would like nothing better than to continue and even improve on the streak by capturing his first CART victory this weekend in front of his friends.
"The Visteon/Patrick Racing Team has a lot of momentum heading into this weekend and hopefully, that will help us to achieve our goal of winning some races this year," Servia said. "We have been knocking on the door, but it just hasn't open all the way for us. It would be very special for me to earn my first CART victory this weekend. I have lived in Miami for several years and it would be nice to win my first race in front of my friends. It would also be special because the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team has worked so hard and been so close that we really deserve this win, for the team and our sponsor Visteon," Servia explained.
Servia will be making his second start in Miami. Last year, in his seventh start for Visteon/Patrick Racing, he qualified 13th and finished 17th at the inaugural Grand Prix Americas.
"The Miami street circuit has changed from last year," Servia began. "It is shorter and that will make it more challenging. Qualifying, like at most street circuits will be extremely important. Fortunately, the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team has been very strong in qualifying all year and especially in the last couple of races," he noted.
Servia went on to say, "I think this will be a very exciting race for the fans. The downtown street races always attract a lot of people and the atmosphere is really special. With the track as short as it is the fans are going to see a lot of action and close racing."
Servia, who is in his fourth CART season and second with Visteon/Patrick Racing Servia, is having a career year. The native of Pals, Catalonia, Spain has finished in the points in 11 of the 15 races this season and placed in the top-six in nine of his last 12 events. He is currently sixth in the championship standings with 108 points.
In addition to the two straight podium finishes and career high second place showings at Milwaukee and Montreal, Servia has established a number of other personal CART career records already this season. He has earned a single season high nine top-10 finishes including a single season high seven top-five showings. Servia has set CART career records for consecutive top-six finishes, seven, top-10 showings, seven and points paying performances, eight. He has started in the top-10 in a CART career high 15 consecutive races with a single season high six top-five qualifying positions including career high second place starting positions in Montreal and Denver. Servia is the only driver to start in the top-10 in all 15 races this year.
Servia will be making his 69th career CART start and 26th for Visteon/Patrick Racing this weekend in Miami. He has earned 32 top-ten finishes including 13 top-five showings with four podium performances in his 68 previous CART events. In his 25 starts with Visteon/Patrick Racing, 10 in 2002 and 15 this year, Servia has finished in the points 16 times with 13 top-10 finishes, nine top-five showings and three podiums.
The Grand Prix Americas will be televised live by CBS on Sunday, September 28, at 1:00 PM (ET) (taped delayed in some markets at 4:30 PM (ET). Speed Channel will air qualifying tape delayed on Saturday, September 27, beginning at 8:00 PM (ET).
For background, statistical information, releases, notes, quotes plus updates on race weekends, go to (www.patrickracing.com).