Fittipaldi-Dingman Racing disappointed down under. Surfer's Paradise, Queensland Australia (Sunday, October 25, 2003) -- After struggling all weekend, the Fittipaldi-Dingman Racing team suffered a major disappointment today at the Lexmark Indy...
Fittipaldi-Dingman Racing disappointed down under.
Surfer's Paradise, Queensland Australia (Sunday, October 25, 2003) -- After struggling all weekend, the Fittipaldi-Dingman Racing team suffered a major disappointment today at the Lexmark Indy 300 when the gearbox on the #7 Ford/Reynard/Bridgestone car failed on the 4th lap. With the team's recent success, expectations were good coming into the race despite having started 13th on today's grid. With a crash in yesterday's practice session, the team did an amazing job getting the back up car ready for the Saturday qualifying session. Because they were no longer using the primary car they qualified in on Friday, the team had to start from scratch in yesterday's session and managed to give their driver a fighting chance for today's race. Unfortunately, it wasn't meant to be.
Monteiro was obviously disappointed that he was unable to finish the race. "After all the hard work, it's a shame," he said. "We struggled all weekend, but we were still hoping to finish in a good position. It's a long race and anything can happen. Again at the start from 3rd to 4th, dog to dog, the gearbox broke. This is the second time this has happened to us at the start. Obviously we're disappointed, but now we go back to work and get ready for Fontana next weekend."
Team owner Emerson Fittipaldi was disappointed with the final results of the weekend. "The Reynards were not the best at this track. It doesn't adapt well and we gave up a lot of time to the Lolas. After the crash the team did a great job, we had a good time. I'm very, very pleased with the team and the work they did this weekend. The Reynard gearbox is critical; the same as Portland when it also broke at the start. I'm disappointed to not be racing. Tiago had a good start and avoided the crash; then the gearbox broke. Now we have to look to Fontana."
The team now heads to the final race of the season at the California Speedway in Fontana California, October 31st through November 2nd.