CHAMPCAR/CART: Portland: Team Rahal Saturday report

Jourdain will start second at Portland. PORTLAND, OR . . . Champ Car World Series points leader Michel Jourdain Jr. guaranteed himself a front row start with the provisional pole on Friday and he missed capturing the outright pole by a ...

Jourdain will start second at Portland.

PORTLAND, OR . . . Champ Car World Series points leader Michel Jourdain Jr. guaranteed himself a front row start with the provisional pole on Friday and he missed capturing the outright pole by a mere 46-thousandths of a second. Jourdain posted a fast lap of 120.473 mph which was second quick in qualifying behind Paul Tracy's 120.565 mph.

Jourdain and the Gigante crew played the waiting game with the approaching showers and allowed the other 18 cars to take to the track while the Gigante car waited. Once the majority of the field had completed their initial qualifying run Jourdain ran on a clear track and posted the second fastest lap of the weekend. With time ticking down and the track clearing after a second run by most of the field, Jourdain took to the track for his final qualifying laps. This time the weather didn't wait and Jourdain lost a chance to better Tracy's time to the rain.

"We had the luxury of waiting at the start which was the right call because due to our pit position we would have been stuck in traffic," said Jourdain. "To be honest I was surprised that the track was as quick as it was. When I was sitting in the car waiting to go out my crew called the times to me and I thought this isn't going to be easy. Still we are very happy with the front row start. I know we have a very fast car and what we need to do is have a strong race and score the most points we can."

The front row start will be Jourdain's third of the season. The last time Jourdain started on the front row he won the Milwaukee Mile Centennial 250 for his first Champ Car win.

Jourdain enters Sunday's G.I. Joe's 200 with a seven point lead on Bruno Junqueira and an eight point lead on Paul Tracy for the Champ Car World Series championship.

The twentieth annual running of the G.I. Joe's 200 will be Sunday afternoon and will be carried live on CBS at 3:30 p.m. EDT.

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Paul Tracy