SEBRING, Fla (Feb. 8, 2001) -- Mo Nunn Racing teammates Tony Kanaan and Alex Zanardi completed two successful days of testing on the Sebring International Raceway road course on Thursday, bringing to six the total number of test days this...
SEBRING, Fla (Feb. 8, 2001) -- Mo Nunn Racing teammates Tony Kanaan and Alex Zanardi completed two successful days of testing on the Sebring International Raceway road course on Thursday, bringing to six the total number of test days this offseason for each driver and marking their first two together as teammates.
Kanaan and his #55 Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing Honda-Reynard covered 245 miles over the two days Wednesday and Thursday and recorded a fast lap under the 51-second barrier.
Zanardi and his #66 Pioneer-WorldCom/Mo Nunn Racing Honda-Reynard totaled 284 miles and clocked a fast lap at just over 51 seconds.
The two-day session also marked the first time the entire staff of engineers and crew for both cars worked side-by-side at the racetrack this offseason. That group includes team owner and veteran race engineer Morris Nunn, Kanaan's race engineer Eric Cowdin, assistant engineer Vince Wood, and crew chief David Popielarz, and Zanardi's race engineer Jim Anderson, assistant engineer Adam Schaechter, and crew chief Don Lambert.
Testing concludes at Sebring and Homestead, Fla., the week of Feb. 19. The season-opening event on the 2001 CART FedEx Championship Series is March 11 at Monterrey, Mexico.
STEVE NEWEY, GENERAL MANAGER
"It was a very good test. We systematically went through our program with each driver. We're trying different with each driver and car to try and cover as much ground as we can before we have to go to Mexico. Those cars were very different as far as their setups and their specifications during the two days. We got through quite a bit. We learned a lot. We gathered a significant amount of information. And, best of all, both drivers are reasonably satisfied with their cars. I wouldn't say we came here focusing on any one particular area. We had a hefty list of things we wanted to accomplish. Overall, it was the usual effort to gain overall grip and to fine-tune and balance the cars. We still have a lot of work left to do. We already have a long list of things to bring to our next test at the end of the month. But this was a nice dress rehearsal for Mexico. As for Alex and Tony working together, it couldn't be better. Those guys work together very well. They're both pulling in the same direction trying to improve their cars, and sharing information. Tony's in a situation where he's got some very familiar faces around him after a year together. Alex is very comfortable in his environment and he's learning the new faces and getting to know the guys working on his car. It takes time for the communication to become second nature."
TONY KANAAN, #55 HOLLYWOOD/MO NUNN RACING HONDA-REYNARD
"We did a lot of stuff. That was the first time that the team worked together on both cars at the same time. I think we did very well. We all shared the same truck, the same tent. I was a bit tense about that coming in. But everything worked like the team was together for a long time. Me and Eric (Cowdin) and Alex and Jim (Anderson), everybody went in a different direction with our setups. We then share information that both of us have found. I'm pleased with the tests. We have four more days to go and that's it. I'm excited we're getting close to the start of the season. I'm ready to go. And these two days really proved to me that a two-car team is way better than one."
ALEX ZANARDI, #66 PIONEER-WORLDCOM/MO NUNN RACING HONDA-REYNARD
"We learned a lot. We're progressing nicely to a certain degree. We're getting to know the car better. I'm a happy guy. Listen, for me, it wasn't the greatest test because every race car driver wants to go fastest. We went into some fundamental work that required a big change to my car. Once we did that, we realized that was not the direction we wanted to go, but we were stuck with it and had to live the whole day with it. Overall, we ran a lot of laps ... really, a lot of laps. We tried a lot of things and covered a lot of ground as a team. We learned a lot from the test. We picked up some very useful information and I'm looking forward to getting back out here for four more days at the end of the month."
-Mo Nunn Racing