Tagliani thrills hometown crowd; puts Johnson Controls Lola on pole for Molson Indy Montreal. French-Canadian Alex Tagliani needed only five laps to set the fastest time of 79.665 seconds (122.418mph) for the second Molson Indy Montreal at ...
Tagliani thrills hometown crowd; puts Johnson Controls Lola on pole for Molson Indy Montreal.
French-Canadian Alex Tagliani needed only five laps to set the fastest time of 79.665 seconds (122.418mph) for the second Molson Indy Montreal at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Driving the #33 Johnson Controls Lola/Ford-Cosworth/Bridgestone Champ Car, Tagliani credited his first-year Rocketsports team. "I'm very happy for my guys; this emotional boost for us is unbelievable," he said. Canadian drivers have taken top slot in all three Canadian Champ Car events this season.
Oriol Servia lines the #20 Visteon Lola outside row one, guaranteeing a front row start after setting fastest lap Friday in provisional qualifying; the Catalonian was fourth quickest today around the 13-turn, 2.709-mile Ile Notre Dame road course at 79.757 seconds (122.276mph)
On a mostly sunny 72-degree Saturday afternoon with brisk breezes, Bruno Junqueira was just .006 in arrears to Tagliani in his #1 PacifiCare Lola, turning 79.671 seconds (122.408mph) and will start third in what he termed "a very good car." Michel Jourdain Jr., who had mechanical problems Friday earned fourth grid spot in the #9 Gigante Lola with a lap of 79.751 seconds (122.286mph) and feels "pretty good about today. Our Lola is very good and we are close to the front row," just .086-seconds shy of pole.
Despite missing Friday time trials with practice engine failure, Patrick Carpentier rebounded for fifth on the 19-car grid in his #32 Team Player's Lola at 79.810 seconds (122.195mph). "Fifth is good because we did not run during qualifying yesterday. I found a gap in traffic with my first set of tires" to set the mark. Rookie Sebastien Bourdais starts sixth in the #2 Lilly Lola at 79.818 seconds (122.183mph) noting, "We've been close all weekend. On my second run, all I had was traffic, traffic, traffic, but .153 seconds behind pole isn't bad. With two-tenths more we could be on pole! Veteran Jimmy Vasser, in his 200th CART start holds seventh grid spot, sharing row four with points leader Paul Tracy's #3 Team Player's Lola. Tracy "couldn't get the car stopped and that's been our trouble here. Clearly we weren't fast enough today" to take pole. The top 12 drivers lapped within one second; the top ten were timed within 7/10ths of a second, Mario Dominguez taking 10th in the #55 Herdez Lola.
The 75-lap Molson Indy Montreal takes place at 2PM EDT. Speed TV broadcasts the race at 9PM EDT.