Lexington, Ohio, August 11, 2000 Team Player's drivers Patrick Carpentier and Alex Tagliani may be shaking their heads at their recent struggles in qualifying on road courses, but the Canadian duo is determined to keep working to find a solution...
Lexington, Ohio, August 11, 2000 Team Player's drivers Patrick Carpentier and Alex Tagliani may be shaking their heads at their recent struggles in qualifying on road courses, but the Canadian duo is determined to keep working to find a solution that will help them move up on the starting grid.
"We are definitely making progress in terms of our set-ups, but we are lagging in performance because of a lack of grip," said Tagliani, who posted the 17th-fastest lap with a time of 1:07.817 seconds for an average speed of 119.864 mph. "We need to raise the car so we don't bottom out in some corners. If we improve on that and remove some of the understeering, I think we can set good times for final qualifying."
As for his teammate Patrick Carpentier, he was equally confident that things would improve as the weekend wore on.
"I'm pretty happy with the car, but because of our previous qualifying position (in Toronto), we were stuck laying down rubber for the second group for today's qualifying session," explained Carpentier, who was 15th on the lap chart with a time of 1:07.507 seconds (120.414 mph). "Still, the car is better than it has been in a long time on a road course and I believe that Team Player's will make the necessary changes that will enable us to be among the quickest tomorrow."
"The track layout at Mid-Ohio is very challenging with the different elevations and the hard braking corners," added Carpentier, who missed last year's race because of an injury. "On race day, there is so much rubber on it that it's difficult to turn into the corners, but it is still one of my favorite tracks on the CART circuit because it presents such a challenge for the drivers and their crews."
The two Team Penske drivers currently make up the front row on the grid as Brazil's Gil de Ferran claimed the provisional pole with a time of 1:05.347 seconds (124.394 mph), ahead of teammate and fellow countryman Helio Castroneves (1:05.362 sec.). Scotland's Dario Franchitti posted the third-fastest lap with a time of 1:05.971 seconds.
Racing fans can track the progress of Team Player's throughout the weekend by logging into the team's web site at www.teamplayers.ca. They can also watch the 83-lap Miller Lite 200 live on The Sports Network at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday.