CHAMPCAR/CART: Mont-Tremblant: Team Australia race report

POWER ON THE PODIUM AND PAGENAUD FOURTH AT MONT TREMBLANT Team Australia drivers Will Power and Simon Pagenaud have capped an outstanding team performance to finish third and fourth respectively in Round six of the Champ Car World Series at the...

POWER ON THE PODIUM AND PAGENAUD FOURTH AT MONT TREMBLANT

Team Australia drivers Will Power and Simon Pagenaud have capped an outstanding team performance to finish third and fourth respectively in Round six of the Champ Car World Series at the Mont Tremblant circuit in Quebec, Canada today.

Power claimed his third podium finish of the season and the fourth of his Champ Car career with third place, while Pagenaud's fourth place is the Frenchman's best result so far in what is his rookie season.

Australian driver Power continues to sit third in the championship standings, while Pagenaud rises to sixth place and also sits second in the Roshfrans Rookie of the Year standings.

It was a poor start to the race for Team Australia as both Aussie Vineyards cars stalled on the grid at the start of the race and both had to be re-started by the Holmatro Safety Team.

In a race of changing weather conditions and pit strategy the entire team worked hard to get Power and Pagenaud back to the front, an effort that was rewarded when Power grabbed his third podium for the year, coming home 7.3 seconds behind the race winner.

Pagenaud led five laps at one point but eventually came home in fourth, capping a great recovery by the team in trying conditions at what is now one of Champ Car's most challenging circuits.

Team Australia now leads the three-race Canadian Triple Crown standings. The award is a team's championship awarded to the best team over the three Canadian events held in July (Mont Tremblant, Toronto and Edmonton).

Third and fourth for Power and Pagenaud today gives Team Australia the lead in the Triple Crown with an average finishing position of 3.5. Next best is Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing on 4.5 and Rsports on 6.0.

Ironically, Power and Pagenuad were chosen by Champ Car to announce the new competition last week in Montreal and Mont-Tremblant, and Power predicted that he would finish one spot ahead of his teammate -- although he was hoping for a 1-2 result.

While Pagenaud just missed the podium, he led for five laps before settling for fourth. Power, meanwhile, ran as high as second before finishing on the podium for the third time this year, after starting the season as the winner in Las Vegas.

In keeping with the spirit of the "Triple Crown" concept, the top three teams averaging the best finishing position during the Champ Car Canadian Triple Crown events will receive Inuit Stone Carving representing their status as the top three teams of the inaugural team competition.

This type of stone carving is rooted in the ancient past of the native Canadian Inuit tribe. In addition to the traditional stone carving, the winning team also will be treated to an array of Canadian-themed rewards.

Robert Doornbos shares the overall championship lead after victory today at Mont Tremblant, the Dutchman beating home Sebastien Bourdais and Power at the 2.65-miles (4.26 kilometre) circuit.

The Champ Car World Series resumes next weekend for Round seven of the schedule at the Toronto street circuit in Canada.

WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY --

Will Power -- #5 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01

"I went past my grid, so I had to get it in reverse, trying to get it into first gear," said Power.

"By the time I looked up, the third red lights are on. My foot went straight to the floor realising that the light's were going to go out any second. I think the reason I stalled is because the turbo did not spool.

"I looked in my mirrors. People were just missing me. I mean, I thought there was going to be a big accident.

"So I took off and went into a lot a fuel save mode. We ended up running second for a while. This track is just so ridiculous with the weather. It's completely dry and sunny in one spot, then you get to the next corner and it's raining. I spun. I think I went to the back again. Then there was a big scuffle of about five or six cars for the lead.

"Everyone in the pits took wets. The car was all right in the wet. I think it was a lot about driving because everybody had their dry set-ups on. We ended up third. The good thing about Champ Car is you just never give up. It's great like that. You can almost go a lap down and then come back and finish on the podium. It's just really, really good racing."

Simon Pagenaud -- #15 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01

"I really enjoyed the race," said Pagenaud.

"It was fun with the weather change and everything. We had a great race car and great strategy.

"I stalled at the start, but we were able to catch up through good fuel mileage and a very good pace. It was a really good day.

"I really enjoyed myself, racing with Sebastien, Will and Robert.

"I'm just really glad to be a leader of the Triple Crown, which is the championship for the Canadian races. I'm going to try with Will to stay ahead and do our best in Toronto next week."

Craig Gore -- Team Australia Co-Owner

"In the true spirit of this team, no one gave up today and the rewards came," said Gore.

"To finish third and fourth after being dead last after the race start is testimony to the fighting qualities this team has.

"It was important to keep the championship points ticking over and to be heading the Canadian Triple Crown is a nice position to be in.

"It will be great if we can continue our race pace in Toronto next weekend."

-credit: team australia

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Sébastien Bourdais , Robert Doornbos , Will Power , Simon Pagenaud