CHAMPCAR/CART: Milwaukee: Ford Racing preview

MILLER LITE 250 THE FIRST OF THREE CONSECUTIVE CART RACES - The CART FedEx Championship Series returns to action this weekend with the Miller Lite 250 at The Milwaukee Mile in West Allis, WI. The event marks the first of three consecutive races...

MILLER LITE 250 THE FIRST OF THREE CONSECUTIVE CART RACES - The CART FedEx Championship Series returns to action this weekend with the Miller Lite 250 at The Milwaukee Mile in West Allis, WI. The event marks the first of three consecutive races for the CART teams and drivers, to be followed by the Bridgestone Grand Prix of Monterey at Laguna Seca on June 9th and the G.I. Joe's 200 in Portland on June 16th.

FORD-COSWORTH AND ITS OVAL TRACK SUCCESS - Since introducing the XF engine for the 2000 FedEx Championship season, Ford-Cosworth has been a strong contender in every oval track event over the last two seasons. Consider that in the 18 CART races contested since the XF first appeared in the season-opening race at the Homestead Motor Speedway in 2000, Ford-Cosworth has won nine races, recorded 43 top-five finishes and made 28 podium appearances.


Patrick Carpentier - Scored his best career result at Motegi on April 27th with a fourth-place finish - his best of the season. Currently sits eighth in the championship standings with 18 points. Has experienced some success at Milwaukee with one pole position [1998] and three top 10 finishes in five career starts, including a third-place result in 2000. Holds The Milwaukee Mile qualifying record which he established in 1998 with a lap of 185.500 miles per hour [20.028 seconds]. Has scored six career podium finishes on ovals, including his first career victory last season at Michigan.

Mario Dominguez - Scored the first championship points of his career [two] five weeks ago with an 11th-place finish at Motegi. Sits atop the Jim Trueman Rookie of the Year standings ahead of Townsend Bell, who has yet to score any championship points this season.

Michel Jourdain, Jr. - Currently the hottest driver in the CART FedEx Championship Series and the only one with three consecutive top-five finishes. Began the season with a fourth-place result in Monterrey, and has scored back-to-back fifth-place finishes in Long Beach and Motegi. Sitting second in the championship with 32 points, he has already surpassed his previous career high of 30 championship points established last season. Best qualifying effort at Milwaukee is 21st (1999 and '01), and he's never scored a championship point in six starts at Milwaukee, posting a career-high finish of 13th in 2001.

Max Papis - Had his streak of points scoring finishes stopped at eight after a brake problem sidelined him in Motegi. Currently sits seventh in the championship with 18 points. Boasts two top-10 finishes thus far this season, including a third-place finish in Long Beach. Has made five career starts at Milwaukee with back-to-back results of seventh (2000) and eighth (2001).

Alex Tagliani - Recorded his best finish of the season at Motegi on April 27th with a second-place result. Opened the season with a fifth-place finish in Mexico after qualifying third. Has posted four top-five finishes in the last five races dating back to his runner-up performance in Australia last year. Started 25th and finished 12th at Milwaukee last year after qualifying 13th, and finished 22nd as a rookie in 2000. Currently sits fourth in the championship standings with 26 points.

Jimmy Vasser - An engine fire ended his race prematurely at Motegi on April 27th. Has not finished two of the three races thus far this season [Monterrey - contact; Motegi - mechanical], but still sits ninth in the championship with 17 points. Has scored three top-five and six top-10 finishes at Milwaukee in nine career starts, highlighted by a victory in 1998 [qualified fifth]. Generally not a strong qualifier on The Milwaukee Mile with just three starts coming from inside the top 10. Has captured four pole positions, five victories and made 12 podium appearances in oval track events throughout his career.

COSWORTH RACING CHAMP CAR WINS - Max Papis' third career Champ Car victory at Laguna Seca on October 14, 2001 was the 212th victory for Cosworth Racing in USAC- and CART-sanctioned races since it entered North American open-wheeled racing in 1976. Cosworth has won 166 CART-sanctioned races and 46 USAC-sanctioned races, including five victories in 1996 with the Ford-Cosworth XB engine during the inaugural season of the Indy Racing League [IRL]. Michael Andretti has won the most races using a Cosworth engine [25], followed by Rick Mears [20], Bobby Rahal [18], Mario Andretti [16] and Johnny Rutherford [16].

SPARK PLUGS - Former Team Rahal driver Kenny Brack won at Milwaukee last season, giving Ford its first win on the one-mile track since Michael Andretti won in 1996. Altogether, Ford has enjoyed victory at Milwaukee five times [2001, 1996, 1995, 1993 and 1992], while Cosworth Racing has won 19 times ... Ford has had just four front row starters at Milwaukee since re-entering CART racing in 1992 - all from the pole. Raul Boesel scored back-to-back pole positions in 1993 and 1994, Teo Fabi led the field to the green flag in 1995 and Kenny Brack won from the pole a year ago... Patrick Carpentier is the only current Ford-powered driver to have started from the pole at Milwaukee [1998].


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Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Jimmy Vasser , Raul Boesel , Max Papis , Patrick Carpentier , Alex Tagliani , Kenny Brack , Townsend Bell , Mario Dominguez , Mario Andretti , Rick Mears , Teo Fabi , Johnny Rutherford , Michel Jourdain