MONTREAL (Sunday, Aug. 25, 2002) -- Tony Kanaan and the ...
MONTREAL (Sunday, Aug. 25, 2002) -- Tony Kanaan and the #10 Pioneer-WorldCom/Mo Nunn Racing Honda-Lola finished third at today's inaugural Molson Indy Montreal for his second podium and third top-four finish in the last four events. Kanaan started 13th and quickly picked up two positions on the opening lap including one front-runner - Kenny Brack - who was put out of the race at the first corner. Kanaan moved up to 10th by Lap 4 and stayed there until pitting under yellow on Lap 12 with then-race-leader Cristiano da Matta and two other cars. That dropped him back to 14th, but Kanaan quickly moved up to third by Lap 23, when 11 cars in front of him that had yet to pit were required to make stops under this season's new mandatory pit window rules. (Cars were required to pit every 21 laps today). Kanaan next pitted on Lap 33 and fell back to nighth place, but then moved back up to fourth by Lap 42 and stayed in the top five the rest of the way. Paul Tracy pitted on Lap 64 of today's 80-lap race to hand fourth place over to Kanaan, and then he picked up his final position when then second-place Bruno Junqueira began experiencing mechanical problems. Kanaan pitted for a fourth and final time on Lap 69 and held onto third place with Tracy in hot pursuit. Kanaan held off Tracy the rest of the way, including during a Lap 74 restart. Today's podium finish was the sixth of Kanaan's career and the third Champ Car podium for the third-year Mo Nunn Racing team. Kanaan also was third at Vancouver on July 28, and earned a podium last season at Japan's Twin Ring Motegi.
Dario Franchitti, who also won at Vancouver, was today's winner with da Matta finishing second.
The next stop on the 2002 CART FedEx Championship Series tour is next weekend's inaugural Shell Grand Prix of Denver (Sept. 1), Round 14 of 19 events on the schedule.
"I have to admit that I really had my doubts about today's race, and that turned out to be a big mistake. It didn't stop me from driving as hard as I could every lap out there today. But it taught me another one of life's lessons, that if you never give up, good things are going to happen to you. And we finally had some more luck go our way today. We changed the car completely after this morning's warm-up. Shocks, springs, the setups, everything. It was a setup that we never ran this weekend. We didn't just throw another setup at the car. We carefully thought everything through and worked really hard to get a car that would be consistent all through the race today. It was. We made hardly any changes all day long, and I was able to drive hard all the way. Unfortunately, we broke a header midway through the race, and I thought to myself, 'man, it's going to be another one of those days.' But the car held together, even though it was on fire when I came in after the race. I really didn't want to see the yellow (on Lap 71) because I was afraid the car would get too hot. But it didn't. I also lost my clutch with about 15 laps to go, but that turned out to be not such a big deal. I've got to hand it to my guys, to Morris (Nunn, team owner) and Iain (Watt, engineer) because they never gave up and they gave me a car that we could take to the podium. This is great ... two straight podiums in Canada. We should race the whole championship here!"