CHAMPCAR/CART: Motegi; Toyota notes and quotes

<pre> May 13, 2000 Firestone Firehawk 500 - Twin Ring Motegi Toyota Race Notes Race Results Finish Qualified ...

<pre> May 13, 2000 Firestone Firehawk 500 - Twin Ring Motegi Toyota Race Notes

Race Results Finish Qualified #97 Cristiano da Matta 4 19 #1 Juan Montoya 7 1 #12 Jimmy Vasser 21 3 #96 Oriol Servia 24 13

Manufacturer Points: Ford - 74 Honda - 68 Toyota - 56 Mercedes-Benz - 15

Driver Standings: Paul Tracy 56 Jimmy Vasser 42 Roberto Moreno 42 Max Papis 25 </pre> MONTOYA DOMINATES MOTEGI; POP-OFF VALVE COSTS FIRST TOYOTA WIN

- Juan Montoya dominated today's Firestone Firehawk 500 leading 172 of the first 175 laps before a loose pop-off valve forced him to pit on Lap 176, dropping him to a seventh-place finish. The 172 laps led is the most ever led by a Toyota driver in a race - eclipsing Montoya's own mark of 21 at Homestead. For the season, he's now led 192 laps - the most in CART competition this year.

- The Target Toyota's of Montoya and Jimmy Vasser ran the two fastest race laps of the day, while Cristiano da Matta was fourth - making it three of the four fastest cars in today's race powered by Toyota.

- Cristiano da Matta earned his second consecutive top-five finish with a fourth - the third time he's placed fourth in a Champ Car race. With the showing, da Matta climbs into a fourth-place tie in the FedEx Championship Series points race with 25 points.

- Today's top Toyota finish of fourth by da Matta, in addition to the bonus points earned by Montoya, gives Toyota 56 Manufacturer's Championship points after four races this season. Toyota currently ranks third, 18 points out of the Manufacturer's Championship lead. Heading into this season, Toyota's best performance for a season was 80 points in 1999.

- Jimmy Vasser, who ran in second-place much of the day before mechanical problems sidelined him, remains in second-place in the CART points standings with 42 points.

- Due to a Friday morning practice crash, Norberto Fontana did not qualify or start this weekend's Firehawk Firestone 500. Fontana was hospitalized Friday evening for observation, but released on Saturday morning.

Quotes:

Jim Aust, Toyota vice president of motorsports: "It's terribly disappointing not to get our first win due to some fluke misfortune. Juan easily had the field covered. He deserved the win today. We know we've got the package to get the job done. All we need now is a little racing luck. We had three great drives today - Jimmy had the second-best car on the track and easily could have won as well, and Cristiano is fast becoming one of the top drivers in the sport."

NEXT RACE: May 28 - Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix, Nazareth, Penn.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jimmy Vasser , Max Papis , Roberto Moreno , Paul Tracy , Oriol Servia , Norberto Fontana , Cristiano da Matta