CHAMPCAR/CART: Player's Racing Chicago qualifying

Cicero, Illinois, July 29, 2000 Team Player's rookie Alex Tagliani matched his third-best qualifying performance of the season today when he clocked the 8th-quickest lap on the 1.029-mile oval to garner the outside position on Row 4 for Sunday's...

Cicero, Illinois, July 29, 2000 Team Player's rookie Alex Tagliani matched his third-best qualifying performance of the season today when he clocked the 8th-quickest lap on the 1.029-mile oval to garner the outside position on Row 4 for Sunday's Grand Prix of Chicago, the 12th event of the season on the FedEx CART Championship schedule.

Tagliani's teammate Patrick Carpentier, who has three top-5 finishes in the four oval-course events in which he has competed this season, will start from the outside of Row 6. The pole-sitter for the 225-lap race is Colombia's Juan Montoya, who registered a time of 22.107 seconds (167.567 miles per hour). Brazilians Helio Castroneves and Tony Kanaan, who were second and third respectively, were separated by only 4 one-thousandths of a second, as the top 17 qualifiers at today's session shattered the 22.788 seconds that pole-sitter Max Papis recorded last year in the first-ever Grand Prix of Chicago.

"Team Player's goal was to start in the top 10, so we're happy with the results," said Tagliani, whose best qualifying results so far have been the pole in Brazil, fourth place at Homestead in the season opener and eighth last weekend on the Michigan super-oval. "I think we're very competitive heading into the race. It's going to be a race of strategy, and Team Player's usual quickness in the pits is going to come into play. We also have to make sure we stay clear of trouble."

Tagliani, who ran a quick lap of 22.409 seconds (165.309 mph), attributed his improved lap times in the qualifying session to the fact the Team Player's crew added pressure to the shocks following the morning practice. He encountered some minor problems with oversteer in the first two corners, but he handled that challenge by adjusting the anti-roll bar.

Carpentier's efforts to get closer to the front of the starting grid were a bit hampered by some excessive push with his Player's Reynard. "I went down lower in corners 3 and 4 and it helped a bit, but it wasn't enough," explained Carpentier, who clocked a quick lap of 22.481 seconds (164.779 mph). "Starting from 12th on a short oval isn't ideal but all season long Team Player's has displayed the ability to get toward the front during the race. We're hopeful we can do that again because the car was running real well today with full tanks, but I'll have to be aggressive and pick my spots well."

Carpentier has been able to do just that so far this season. He has maintained or improved on his starting position in seven of the eight races in which he has appeared. The only race that he failed to do so was at Nazareth, his first race back after missing three events because of a broken wrist.

Racing fans can follow the race progress of Team Player's by logging on to the web site at www.teamplayers.ca. They can also watch the Target Grand Prix of Chicago live on The Sports Network at 4 p.m. (ET) on Sunday.

TEAM PLAYER'S NEWS BUREAU SERVICES PROVIDED FOR THE TARGET GRAND PRIX OF CHICAGO

The Player's Racing News Bureau will send out results of the Player's drivers, along with comments by Patrick Carpentier and Alex Tagliani, on a daily basis. CNW photos Team Player's will be transmitted during the weekend on the Canadian Press wire.

WEEK-END SCHEDULE

Local time Eastern time (+1)

Sunday, July 30 CART warm up 11:00 a.m.  11:30 a.m. noon 12:30 CART p.m.
race 3:00 p.m.  4:00                                                p.m.

NEWS EDITORS TELEVISION

A VISUAL CLIP FROM CHICAGO WILL BE SENT VIA SATELLITE FOLLOWING THE RACE ON SUNDAY*

SUNDAY, JULY 30, 2000

TIME:  7:15 p.m.  7:30 p.m. (Eastern time) SATELLITE : Telstar 7/K6 129
degrees West d/l freq: 11820 horizontal pole AUDIO:  6.2 & 6.8 Mhz

** FOR ANY PROBLEM REGARDING SATELLITE TRANSMISSION CONTACT Caroline: (514) 927-1298 (cell)

TEAM PLAYER'S NEWS BUREAU At the track:

France Larrivee: (514) 594-7416 (cell) Max d'Orsonnens: (708) 780-9443

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Max Papis , Patrick Carpentier , Alex Tagliani , Tony Kanaan