CHAMPCAR/CART: San Jose: Series Saturday qualifying report

JUSTIN WILSON DRIVES THE CDW CAR TO THE POLE POSITION IN SILICON VALLEY Four-tenths of a second separates the Top-13 Drivers in Final Qualifying SAN JOSE (July 28, 2007) -- Nearly every technology company in Silicon Valley is working to make...

JUSTIN WILSON DRIVES THE CDW CAR TO THE POLE POSITION IN SILICON VALLEY
Four-tenths of a second separates the Top-13 Drivers in Final Qualifying

SAN JOSE (July 28, 2007) -- Nearly every technology company in Silicon Valley is working to make their product better and faster and the same can be said for the teams and drivers in the Champ Car World Series. At the San Jose Grand Prix at Redback Raceway, it was Justin Wilson (#9 CDW Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) who made his CDW car the fastest, claiming the pole position for Sunday's race with a lap at 49.039 seconds (105.932 mph).

Wilson was the only driver to sit at the top of the time charts twice during the qualifying session that was only slowed once by a red flag. Graham Rahal (#2 Medi|Zone Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) led both practice sessions today and was the first to set the pace in qualifying. Unfortunately, the 18-year-old rookie could not better his early time and wound up with the sixth starting position.

Up next at the point was fellow rookie Neel Jani (#21 Red Bull-Gulfstream Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) who held the top spot for some time before being knocked off by Wilson. The Swiss driver, Jani, will start fifth. Wilson's reign at the top was stopped with three minutes to go in the session when Oriol Servia (#7 Indeck Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) posted his best lap. The Spaniard stopped the clocks at 49.106 seconds (105.787 mph) which was good enough for fourth on the grid.

Simon Pagenaud (#15 Aussie Vineyards Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) then claimed the top spot, but because he brought out a red flag after spinning in Turn 6, his time at the top was short lived. Pagenaud's penalty for the red flag meant he lost his fastest lap of the session. His second quickest lap was only good enough for ninth on the grid. Wilson retook the top spot with 90 seconds to go and only Dan Clarke (#4 Minardi Team USA Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) challenged for pole. The speedy Brit came within six-hundredths of his countryman but was unable to set the fastest time.

Provisional pole sitter Sebastien Bourdais (#1 McDonald's Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) struggled throughout qualifying, posting only the sixth best time. The three-time defending champion will start from the front row based on his performance during qualifying on Friday.

Alex Tagliani (#8 LXN2 Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) will start seventh with Tristan Gommendy (#22 Pay by Touch-Megaspiera Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) slotted in eighth. Gommendy is returning to his PKV Racing machine after injuring his back at Edmonton last week and missing the event. Bruno Junqueira (#19 Sonny's Bar-B-Q Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) will start tenth with Paul Tracy (#3 Indeck Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone) starting eleventh.

Two of the top four drivers in the series standings struggled during today's session as Robert Doornbos (#14 Minardi Team USA Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone), who is second in the standings, will start 15th and Will Power (#5 Aussie Vineyards Cosworth/DP01/Bridgestone), who is third in the title chase, will start 12th.

The San Jose Grand Prix at Redback Raceway will begin at 3:00 p.m. local (6:00 p.m. ET) on Sunday. The race can be seen live on ESPN2 in the United States. 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

Justin Wilson: "We put the option Bridgestone tires on for both of our stints this afternoon. They worked very well for us and I am just happy that we could put the #9 CDW car on the pole today. Hopefully we'll take it all the way for the win tomorrow."

Sebastien Bourdais: "I think realistically we're pretty happy with the way it went because we were completely lost this morning and it doesn't happen very often. I'm just very glad the McDonald's team actually pulled one off yesterday because it would have looked pretty bad otherwise."

Dan Clarke:"We just seem to get a good vibe here, not just with the team and the location, but the car seems to like it as well. So we're happy being in San Jose so far. Everything is going well. Being top three for tomorrow should let us do what we want to in the race."

-credit: ccws

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Justin Wilson , Alex Tagliani , Paul Tracy , Oriol Servia , Graham Rahal , Sébastien Bourdais , Robert Doornbos , Neel Jani , Tristan Gommendy , Will Power , Daniel Clarke , Simon Pagenaud