(Detroit, Mi) -- PacWest Racing's Mark Blundell and Mauricio Gugelmin battled street course "gremlins" in the first day of qualifying for the Tenneco Automotive Grand Prix of Detroit. Blundell was 12th in the morning practice session in his...
(Detroit, Mi) -- PacWest Racing's Mark Blundell and Mauricio Gugelmin battled street course "gremlins" in the first day of qualifying for the Tenneco Automotive Grand Prix of Detroit.
Blundell was 12th in the morning practice session in his Motorola PacWest Mercedes-Benz, but could only manage the 17th-fastest time in qualifying after battling traffic and a fluid leak in the floor well of his car.
Mauricio Gugelmin is 19th on the provisional grid after clocking a time of 1:16.78s in his Nextel PacWest Mercedes-Benz.
Both drivers have their fingers crossed that the Detroit weather is fine tomorrow so they have the opportunity to improve on their provisional times.
MARK BLUNDELL - # 18 MOTOROLA PACWEST MERCEDES-BENZ -- 17th
Morning Session: 1:16.058s -- 12th; Qualifying: 1:16.116
"The time on the sheet certainly does not indicate the car we had today," said Blundell.
"I had oil through the foot well of the car and I just could not get any grip with my heels on the floor. I could not control the pedals and that is not a nice a feeling.
"The stoppages and the traffic meant we simply did not get in a flying lap.
"Power wise, I think we are looking pretty good, we are getting a picture of what is needed more and more and the guys at Mercedes-Benz are responding very well.
"We just need to keep our fingers crossed that the weather is fine tomorrow and we get the chance to show what we have."
MAURICIO GUGELMIN - # 17 NEXTEL PACWEST MERCEDES-BENZ - 19th
Morning Session: 1:17.821s -- 19th; Qualifying: 1:16.785s
"We were able to get one lap on each set of tires, but the overall performance was not good," said Gugelmin.
"The car is not working the way I thought it was going to and there are definitely some improvements which need to be made overnight.
"In Detroit tires are very important -- usually you only get one good qualifying lap with the pressures remaining intact.
"We just need the weather to stay fine tomorrow so we can have another crack."