CHAMPCAR/CART: Milwaukee: Newman/Haas Thursday practice report


BRUNO JUNQUEIRA #1 PacifiCare Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone: "We started off the day not as happy as we could have been after the first session but made the car better and better in the night session. On our last run I think we would have had a 21.0 lap time which would have been closer to Michel's time but the yellow came out for Ryan's accident. We made some progress today but we know we need to keep working. To be seventh fastest, I had to get everything out of myself and the car to set that time. Once we make the car better the lap time will come easier. The visibility was fine. I think the fans are going to really enjoy the race."

NOTES: It will be his third race here and first at night in any type of car...Junqueira started fifth in the 2002 race, led four laps and finished 10th...He started 12th in his first race here and finished fourth...Is currently tied for first place in the point standings with Paul Tracy, each with 66 points. He is the only competitor to have completed all laps contested.

SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS #2 Lilly Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone: "Our goal was to slowly get up to speed and we were working toward that but we wanted to accomplish more than we did. On our first set of new tires in the night practice, I didn't get the most out of them when they were at their best. We put on the second set on at the end of the session to check our progress but Ryan brought out the yellow and we didn't get any indication. Some of his debris hit the endplate on the front wing and damaged it. The visibility was good and the track is very quick."

NOTES: He earned three poles (2-road course; 1-oval) and two wins in five events so far. (He started in second place in England and fifth in Long Beach.) Has won a total of five bonus points this season (Friday & Saturday in St. Pete; Saturday in Monterrey, Saturday and Sunday in Germany). In Germany, he brought the team its first pole on an oval since Christian Fittipaldi won the pole for the 1999 Rio de Janeiro event. It was the 10th pole for the team in the past 20 races. He is currently ranked 4th in the point standings with 49 points.

TEAM NOTES: The team has won SIX races here (Mi. Andretti 1996, 1992, 1991; Paul Tracy 1995; Nigel Mansell 1993; Mario Andretti 1985) and ONE POLE (Mario Andretti 1985) as well as 11 PODIUM FINISHES (2nd - Mi. Andretti 2000, 1997, 1989; 3rd - Mi. Andretti 1995, Ma. Andretti 1991). Both drivers will be attempting to bring the team it's 12th win in the past 27 races for NHR beginning with Cristiano da Matta's victory in Australia of '01 as well as their 17th oval pole. They have 73 overall to date.

ON TAP FOR TOMORROW: Coverage of qualifying will be televised live on SPEED at 9:30 p.m. ET.

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Christian Fittipaldi , Paul Tracy , Nigel Mansell , Mario Andretti , Cristiano da Matta