CHAMPCAR/CART: Reynard driver will take championship

Reynard ensured victory in the CART Constructors Championship at Laguna Seca over four weeks ago and, although the the CART Drivers Championship goes to the wire at the final race of the season in Fontana, California in two weeks time, it is ...

Reynard ensured victory in the CART Constructors Championship at Laguna Seca over four weeks ago and, although the the CART Drivers Championship goes to the wire at the final race of the season in Fontana, California in two weeks time, it is guaranteed that a Reynard driver will be taking the title, with all five of the drivers in contention driving Champ Cars built by the world leading race car constructor.

Surfers Paradise, venue for this weekends round of the FedEx Championship Series, brought victory for Reynard driver, Adrian Fernandez, driving the Patrick Racing Ford Reynard. Fernandez, starting 17th, survived an action packed, incident filled race to score his second win of the season and leap from 5th to 2nd in the Drivers Championship title hunt. He trails current leader Gil de Ferran, Penske Honda Reynard, by 5 points as the Series heads for the season finale on October 29th. The three other drivers in with a chance of taking the title, and the $1 million bonus which goes with it, are Paul Tracy, KOOL Honda Reynard, of Team Green, Kenny Brack, Shell Ford Reynard of Team Rahal and Roberto Moreno, Visteon Ford Reynard of Patrick Racing.

Kenny Brack, driving the Shell Ford Reynard for Team Rahal finished second this weekend, the nineteenth round of the championship, just 0.324 seconds behind Fernandez. Brack, the 2000 CART Rookie of the Year, enhanced his championship hopes with his second place finish, matching the best result of his rookie season, established at Cleveland. Jimmy Vasser, Target Toyota Lola, Ganassi Racing, finished third, his second consecutive podium finish.

Race winner, Adrian Fernandez, Patrick Racing Ford Reynard commented after the race, "I tell you, you have to finish to be able to win [the championship]. Patrick Racing has struggled the second half of the season, both [teammate] Roberto [Moreno] and myself, to be able to qualify up front. We know we can win races if we can qualify at the front, but we continue to fight even when we don't, and we get great fuel consumption. I didn't get a good start, but it helped me with the mess in Turn 1. I was able to gain four positions there. The biggest moment I had was trying to pass Max [Papis]. We almost crashed, but we managed to stay up there and stay focused. Under the last situation with the yellow, almost everybody pitted but myself, Alex [Barron] and Roberto didn't pit. At the end, those yellows really helped us, as well as the two-hour limit. It's just fantastic that this series offers the opportunity to win from [starting] that far back [17th]. So many things can go wrong, but we've been consistent, and that's why we've been able to stay in the championship. I'm very, very excited to win here in Australia. This is one of the best races we come to. It's not a race, it's a party. The people here treat us really well all week. It's just a great place to win, and I'm looking forward to coming back for many, many years to come."

Kenny Brack, Shell Ford Reynard, finishing second said, "Every time I look up and I see the wing on that damned Quaker State car, I don't know what to do. We had trouble in qualifying, but we made some good changes before the race. It was a tough race. The start was kind of a mess, but I had a trouble-free race. I tried everything I could, but if you're running within half a second or a second of the car in front of you, you're not going to get past. Unfortunately, Adrian didn't make any mistakes. Unfortunately for me, fortunately for him."

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Gil de Ferran , Jimmy Vasser , Adrian Fernandez , Roberto Moreno , Paul Tracy , Kenny Brack
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing