SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS DRIVES TO 29TH CAREER POLE POSITION Three-time Champion on the Front Row for the Fourth Time in Four Starts at Road America Elkhart Lake, Wisc. (August 11, 2007) -- Locked in a tight battle for his fourth consecutive Series...
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS DRIVES TO 29TH CAREER POLE POSITION
Three-time Champion on the Front Row for the Fourth Time in Four Starts at Road America
Elkhart Lake, Wisc. (August 11, 2007) -- Locked in a tight battle for his fourth consecutive Series title, Sebastien Bourdais (#1 McDonald's Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) made quite a statement during qualifying for the Champ Car Generac Grand Prix at Road America. Using a similar setup to yesterday, Bourdais dominated the session once again this time taking the pole by 1.5 seconds.
On his way to extending his championship lead to 12 points, Bourdais lapped the 4.048-mile track in 101.535 seconds (143.525 mph). Though the three-time champion has started on the front row every time he has raced at Road America and has scored a podium finish in the three previous starts, he has not been able to get a win.
Joining Bourdais on the front row is Will Power (#5 Aussie Vineyards Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone), who was unable to better his time from Friday's qualifying session. Power's lap of 103.116 seconds (141.324 mph) from provisional qualifying was just good enough to stay in front of Robert Doornbos (#14 Minardi Team USA Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) who clocked a best lap of 103.134 seconds (141.300 mph). Doornbos and Power are second and third respectively in the Series standings, and are both looking to close the gap to Bourdais.
Doornbos was one of nine drivers who improved their qualifying times from Friday as a strong headwind on the front stretch seemed to keep everyone in check. Joining the Dutchman in the second row is Graham Rahal (#2 Medi|Zone Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone), after the 18-year-old qualified fourth with a lap at 103.162 seconds (141.162 mph). Bruno Junqueira (#19 Sonny's Bar-B-Q Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) starts fifth with an impressive resume at Road America. The Brazilian driver has four podium finishes including two wins at the Elkhart Lake track, which was the site of his first career win in 2001.
Moving up to sixth on the grid is Alex Tagliani (#8 LXN2 Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone), who grabbed his first win at Road America in 2004. Relying on a time that was good enough for third on Friday, Neel Jani (#21 Red Bull-Gulfstream Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) will start seventh. Lining up in eighth is 'Speedy' Dan Clarke (#4 Minardi Team USA Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) who also was unable to better his time from yesterday.
Jumping into the top ten with a lap at 103.523 seconds (140.769 mph) was Conquest Racing driver Jan Heylen (#34 Grafiprint Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) who is sporting a new green and white livery this weekend. Rounding out the top ten is Justin Wilson (#9 CDW Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) who was also unable to improve on his qualifying time from Friday.
Though 1.5 seconds separate the first two positions, only .594 seconds separate the next 13 positions, which should lead to some exciting races on the long and winding road course. The Generac Grand Prix at Road America will begin at 2:00 p.m. local (3:00 p.m. ET) on Sunday. The race can be seen live on ABC. Fans can also follow all of the action via the official website of the Champ Car World Series, www.champcar.ws.
QUOTES FROM THE TOP THREE STARTERS
Sebastien Bourdais: "I'm just very, very happy that the McDonald's car was super fast again. It was very consistent for us. To be honest, we haven't changed anything on the car since yesterday."
Will Power: "It's great to be starting on the front row, of course. But with Sebastien's time, I think we're all a little bit concerned. But, you know, you've seen what happens in races: anything can happen."
Robert Doornbos : "This afternoon in between the outings, the Bridgestone red tires went on the car, but I sort of got a little voice in my head that said, No, no, no, I need the blacks. I changed the tires because the reds yesterday were also a bit of a struggle for me. Once I was out on the track, I just felt the tires were good."