CHAMPCAR/CART: Road America: Fernandez Saturday report

Fernandez will start ninth at Road America. Adrian Fernandez will make his 11th Champ Car start in Elkhart Lake from Row Five of the grid after qualifying ninth this afternoon for the Mario Andretti Grand Prix at Road America. Fernandez looked...

Fernandez will start ninth at Road America.

Adrian Fernandez will make his 11th Champ Car start in Elkhart Lake from Row Five of the grid after qualifying ninth this afternoon for the Mario Andretti Grand Prix at Road America. Fernandez looked poised for his career-best start on the 4.048-mile road course after a fourth-place run in provisional qualifying yesterday. However, an understeer problem hindered Fernandez today and he was only able to improve on his provisional time by 0.115 seconds.

After finishing on the podium three times in the past four years at Road America, including a charge from a 26-place start to third in 2001, Fernandez will be looking to add to his success rate on his favorite track tomorrow.

Adrian Fernandez, Owner/Driver -- #51 Tecate/Quaker State/Telmex Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone:

"We got back the push that we normally have in qualifying. That is what has been affecting us. Yesterday was better but today it just didn't work. We lost some positions. Even though I improved my time from yesterday, everyone else improved a lot more. The car just had too much push. For tomorrow, we have good tires and it will depend on how the car is in traffic. I think we will have a good car for the race. It is very close for everybody so I hope the car is good for tomorrow."

FAST FACTS: Will be making his 11th Champ Car start at Road America and his 172nd Champ Car career start-- has finished on the podium three times at Road America in the past four years -- third (2001), second (2000) and third (1999)-- has finished in the top six at Road America in six of 10 starts-- best starting position at Road America was fifth in 1999 and 2000; best finish was second in 2000-- recorded six top-10 finishes in 11 rounds of 2003 competition to date -- second at Long Beach, fourth in Monterrey, Mexico, sixth in Milwaukee, seventh at Laguna Seca, first in Portland and ninth in Toronto-- claimed his best 2003 starting position of third in St. Petersburg and Portland-- has finished over 23 percent of his 53 Champ Car career road course starts in the top five and holds five road course podiums-- career best road course finishes were wins at Portland this year and Mid-Ohio in 1998; career best road course start was pole at Monterrey, Mexico, in 2002-- currently seventh in the championship with 70 points-- enters his 11th season of Champ Car competition with eight career wins and three pole positions-- 40 years old from Mexico City-- formed Fernandez Racing in the fall of 2000 with Tom Anderson-- only competing owner/driver in the series-- is the third most-winning driver in the current Champ Car field-- ranked 10th in CART all-time career starts-- has 21 Champ Car career podiums to his credit-- last win was at Portland on June 22-- last pole position was at Milwaukee in 2002.

Tom Anderson, Managing Director:

"I'm certainly disappointed with the handling of the car today. I was looking at the telemetry while Adrian was driving and there is definitely too much understeer in the car. We weren't successful in getting rid of that today. We are going to go back and work on it tonight. Adrian has done really well at this track in the past and it is one of his favorites. We just have to give him a better car."

-fr-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Adrian Fernandez , Tom Anderson