Mauricio Gugelmin led the five-car Mercedes-Benz contingent in provisional qualifying today for the Motorola 220 at the 4.048-mile Road America circuit at Elkhart Lake, Wis., earning the seventh spot on the grid thanks to a lap of 1:41.044 ...
Mauricio Gugelmin led the five-car Mercedes-Benz contingent in provisional qualifying today for the Motorola 220 at the 4.048-mile Road America circuit at Elkhart Lake, Wis., earning the seventh spot on the grid thanks to a lap of 1:41.044 seconds (144.222 mph). The provisional pole sitter is Gil de Ferran, who turned in a 1:40.392-second lap (145.159 mph).
Gugelmin was prevented from improving his time in the closing minutes of the session when Paul Tracy spun on course and brought out the red flag, ending qualifying despite the fact that approximately four minutes were remaining on the clock.
"I had an even better lap going when Tracy spun," said Gugelmin, who drives the Nextel/PacWest Racing/Mercedes. "I still don't have the balance that I like. It has a push and is loose, but the goal was to get into the fast group for qualifying tomorrow, and we have done that."
Mechanical problems hindered the progress of Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing/ Mercedes driver Tony Kanaan, who managed a 1:42.504-second lap (142.168 mph) for the 18th spot in the field. He had run as high as fourth before being forced to pit so his engineers could attempt to diagnose the problem, but he was unable to return to the track before time ran out.
Mark Blundell, driver of the Motorola/PacWest Racing/Mercedes, had a mechanical problem in the morning practice, and was 10th in the afternoon qualifying with a lap of 1:42.657 seconds (141.956 mph). Herdez/Bettenhausen Motorsports/ Mercedes driver Michel Jourdain Jr. was 23rd, with a 1:44.366-second lap (139.632 mph). Luiz Garcia Jr., who drives the Hollywood/Arciero Project Racing/Mercedes, was 24th with a lap of 1:45.731 seconds (137.829 mph).
Practice continues tomorrow at 10 a.m. (11 p.m. Eastern), and final qualifying will begin at 1:45 p.m. local time (2:45 p.m. Eastern).
<pre> Provisional Qualifying, Motorola 220 Road America, Elkhart Lake, Wis. Aug. 18, 2000
Pos. Driver Engine Time Speed 1 Gil de Ferran Honda 1:40.392 145.159 2 Michael Andretti Ford 1:40.401 145.146 3 Dario Franchitti Honda 1:40.477 145.036 4 Alexandre Tagliani Ford 1:40.482 145.029 5 Adrian Fernandez Ford 1:40.581 144.886 6 Christian Fittipaldi Ford 1:41.016 144.262 7 Mauricio Gugelmin Mercedes-Benz 1:41.044 144.222 8 Helio Castroneves Honda 1:41.072 144.182 9 Kenny Brack Ford 1:41.358 143.776 10 Juan Montoya Toyota 1:41.431 143.672 18 Tony Kanaan Mercedes-Benz 1:42.504 142.168 20 Mark Blundell Mercedes-Benz 1:42.657 141.956 23 Michel Jourdain Jr. Mercedes-Benz 1:44.366 139.632 24 Luiz Garcia Jr. Mercedes-Benz 1:45.731 137.829