CHAMPCAR/CART: Monterey: Team Kool Green Saturday report

Franchitti and Tracy to start 14th and 16th at Laguna Seca. MONTEREY, Ca. - Team KOOL Green drivers Dario Franchitti and Paul Tracy will line up 14th and 16th respectively for Sunday's Bridgestone Grand Prix of Monterey at Mazda Raceway Laguna...

Franchitti and Tracy to start 14th and 16th at Laguna Seca.

MONTEREY, Ca. - Team KOOL Green drivers Dario Franchitti and Paul Tracy will line up 14th and 16th respectively for Sunday's Bridgestone Grand Prix of Monterey at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Franchitti recorded a best lap of 1:10.596 seconds (114.124 mph), while Tracy posted a time of 1:10.616 seconds (114.093 mph).

Cristiano da Matta will start from the pole position and earned a point, after recording a time of 1:09.473 seconds (115.970 mph). Kenny Brack, who guaranteed himself a front row start by recording the best time in Friday qualifying, managed to improve his time to 1:09.575 seconds (115.800 mph) and will line up second. Bruno Junqueira will start third with a time of 1:09.759 seconds (115.495 mph).

Neither Tracy or Franchitti, who will make his 100th career Champ Car start tomorrow, were able to better the time they set in the early part of Saturday's qualifying session after polesitter da Matta's engine let go in the corkscrew, and left oil on the racing line down the back side of the 2.238-mile Mazda Raceway.

Tomorrow's schedule opens with warm-up at 9:30 a.m. PDT and will be followed by the Bridgestone Grand Prix of Monterey at 1:30 p.m. The race will be broadcast live on Speed Channel starting at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Paul Tracy - #26 KOOL Honda-Lola-Bridgestone

"I'm pretty disappointed because we had some good laps going and then the track got oiled down and it ruined the session for everyone. The KOOL car was better this time out but it's a tough situation, because we couldn't take advantage of it. We're starting at the back and we've got to do everything we can to figure out a way to get to the front. We'll have to see what happens."

Morning Practice
Position: 6th
Speed: 114.109 mph
Time: 1:10.606 seconds

Qualifying
Position: 16th
Speed: 114.093 mph
Time: 1:10.616 seconds

John Anderson, Team KOOL Green Race Consultant

"The car wasn't too bad. We waited until a little bit more rubber was laid down, put another set of tires on for the last eight laps, and we believe we wouldn't have been looking too bad out there. Then (Cristiano) da Matta came by, blew oil up the back straight and oiled the whole track down. It's hard to get a read on the KOOL car right now but we have a 30-minute warm up session in the morning. We'll make some changes but our setup won't be far off from where we are right now."

Dario Franchitti - #27 KOOL Honda-Lola-Bridgestone

"The KOOL car is definitely the best it has been all weekend. We are at the point now where we're thinking that if we do a bit here and a bit there, make small changes, we should be able to gain some time. I think we can work with the car a little bit. Yesterday, and even this morning, the car wasn't good at all. It seemed to have no redeeming factors, it was just scary. We're obviously struggling with the Lola this weekend. After how the car was this morning, this afternoon's session was a journey, it was like, wow, I can carry that much speed into the corner."

Morning Practice
Position: 16th
Speed: 111.145 mph
Time: 1:11.843 seconds

Qualifying
Position: 14th
Speed: 114.125 mph
Time: 1:10.596 seconds

Allen McDonald, Race Engineer:

"We changed quite a lot on the car. We are still learning about the Lola and we're trying to work our way through. We think we've found the right direction. This afternoon we followed it and we think we made the KOOL car better. However, we still have a way to go. At least we are learning more, and it should help us on the road courses for the remainder of the season. We have some changes to make tonight. The changes, combined with a good race strategy, will hopefully put us in the points."

-TKG-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Bruno Junqueira , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Kenny Brack , John Anderson , Cristiano da Matta