MIAMI, FLORIDA - SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2003 -- Round ...
MIAMI, FLORIDA - SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2003 -- Round #16 - 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford season -
Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol Servia had his hopes of a podium finished dashed when he struck the wall exiting the hairpin at today's Grand Prix Americas on the temporary street circuit in Miami, Florida.
Servia behind the wheel of the #20 Visteon/Patrick Racing entry, which is powered by Ford/Cosworth and uses a Lola chassis with Bridgestone tires, started third and was running a very competitive race. On lap 40 a yellow flag came out and the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team pitted. Servia entered and exited the pits in third place. However, when the green flag was waved on lap 43, Servia lost control of the car exiting the hairpin and hit the wall on the front straightaway. The impact caused severe damage bringing an end to the day for the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team with Servia in 19th place.
"I know this sounds like an excuse," Servia began, "but I was close to Bruno (Junqueira) so maybe I had a little less downforce. When I hit the bump I just lost control and the Visteon/Patrick Racing car went straight into the wall," he explained.
Servia went on to say, "The Visteon/Patrick Racing car was fantastic all weekend, so we were hoping to go for a win here or at least a podium finish. That was where we running today. We were really quick and I felt really confident. I know I made a mistake, but I was racing hard. It was just one of those racing things that unfortunately you go through. Actually, I am mainly disappointed for the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team. The whole team did a great job this weekend and it is a shame that our race ended this way."
Servia, who is having the best season of his CART career, has now finished in the points in 11 of the 16 races this season and placed in the top-six in nine of his last 13 events. He is currently sixth in the championship standings with 108 points. The talented 29-year-old native of Spain has set a number of personal career records already this season. He has finished a career high second at
Milwaukee and Montreal, earned a single season high nine top-10 placements, scored a single season high seven top-five showings and a single season high three podium finishes including consecutive podium performances for the first time in his career. Servia has also set personal CART career records for consecutive top-six finishes, seven, top-10 showings, seven and points paying performances, eight. In addition, the resident of Miami, Florida has earned career high qualifying positions at Montreal and Denver where he started second, qualified in the top-10 a CART career high 16 consecutive times, earned a single season high 16 top-10 starting positions and a single season high seven top-five starting positions. Servia is the only driver to have qualified in the top-10 in every race this season.
Now in his fourth CART season and second with Visteon/Patrick Racing, Servia has earned 32 top-ten finishes including 13 top-five showings with four podium performances in 69 CART starts. In his 26 starts with Visteon/Patrick Racing, 10 in 2002 and 16 this year, Servia has finished in the points 16 times with 13 top-10 finishes, nine top-five showings and three podiums.
Next up for the Visteon/Patrick Racing Team is the Gran Premio Texmex/Gigante, October 10-12 in Mexico City, Mexico.