ROOKIE EXPERIENCE HAS BENEFITED ROCKETSPORTS IN THE PAST AT MILWAUKEE EAST LANSING, Michigan (May 31, 2006) -- The Rocketsports Racing team earned its first pole position back in 2003 with Alex Tagliani at the Milwaukee Mile during its rookie ...
ROOKIE EXPERIENCE HAS BENEFITED ROCKETSPORTS IN THE PAST AT MILWAUKEE
EAST LANSING, Michigan (May 31, 2006) -- The Rocketsports Racing team earned its first pole position back in 2003 with Alex Tagliani at the Milwaukee Mile during its rookie season in Champ Car. Last year's event at the renowned Mile saw the East Lansing, Michigan-based team's rookie driver Timo Glock, the 2005 Champ Car Rookie-of-the-Year, competing in his first oval race of his young career and earning a top-ten finish after starting 14th on the grid. This year, Rocketsports brings another rookie, Nicky Pastorelli, to the one-mile oval with the goal of earning the team's first top-ten result with Pastorelli in 2006.
The most unique aspect of racing in the Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford is the variety of venues the series competes on. Unlike its rival open-wheel racing series of Formula One and the Indy Racing League, The Champ Car World Series competes on three different types of race courses, which include street racing -- like in Long Beach, road racing -- like in Monterrey, Mexico, and oval racing -- just like the event that will happen this weekend in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
The oldest event on the schedule, as well as the oldest venue in the United States, the Milwaukee Mile in West Allis, Wisconsin also happens to be the only oval race on the 2006 Champ Car World Series schedule. This will be the fourth year that Rocketsports Racing will be competing in Milwaukee and Pastorelli had his first outing on the one-mile track a month ago with the team during a one-day, "all Champ Car Rookie" test.
"I am looking forward to my first race on an oval, and getting to do it on the famed-Milwaukee Mile," said Pastorelli. "We tested there about a month ago, which is when I got my first run on an oval. It was good that we had the opportunity to run on the oval before the actual race weekend. I think that the test went well because I was able to get an idea of what it is like to run on an oval. The Rocketsports team helped me out a lot in terms of getting acquainted to driving on an oval to prepare me for my first oval-race experience."
Pastorelli, who was signed to run with the team for the 2006 season starting in Houston, has two Champ Car starts under his belt. Results have not been as positive as he and the team has hoped for, but with the Italo-Dutch driver's determination and the team's positive attitude, it is only a matter of time.
"We will continue to move forward this weekend and put the first two races behind us," said the 23-year-old driver. "We did not have the results that we should have, but things are coming together. With another test day before the actual race weekend, I feel we will have some more time to prepare and that by the end of the day (Friday) I will have had enough time behind the wheel of the #8 Bavaria City Racing/Rocketsports Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone (on an oval) to go racing competitively. I really do not know what we can expect from this race, so I will just do my best and then we will see where we are."
The actual race weekend event will only be a two-day deal, however all Champ Car teams will be on-track this Friday for a test day. The track will be green from 9:00 a.m. until noon for the Champ Cars on Friday morning, with another "hot track" session scheduled for 1:00 -- 4:00 p.m. that afternoon. There is a two-hour practice session on Saturday morning before the Rocketsports team heads out to qualify for Sunday afternoon's race. The race is scheduled to start at 1:00 p.m. Central Time on Sunday, June 4.
Champ Car qualifying for the Time Warner Cable Road Runner 225 can be seen via tape delay on Sunday, June 4 at 1:30 p.m. EST on SPEED Channel followed by live race coverage from the Milwaukee Mile. For live racing coverage all weekend, sign up for Race Director at www.champcar.ws.