CHAMPCAR/CART: Surfers Paradise: Honda Friday report

Tracy second quickest in opening qualifying. A previous race winner here in 1995 and always a strong contender in Australia, Honda-powered Paul Tracy dominated almost all of qualifying today for Sunday's Honda Indy 300. The Team KOOL Green...

Tracy second quickest in opening qualifying.

A previous race winner here in 1995 and always a strong contender in Australia, Honda-powered Paul Tracy dominated almost all of qualifying today for Sunday's Honda Indy 300. The Team KOOL Green driver lowered the existing lap record - set by teammate Dario Franchitti in 1999 - and appeared to be headed for the provisional pole, only to be bested by six hundredths of a second in the final minutes by Bruno Junqueira.

Tony Kanaan and Adrian Fernandez also had strong qualifying efforts today, at one time ranking second and third on the time sheets behind Tracy. Kanaan ended the session fifth fastest for Mo Nunn Racing, with team owner/driver Fernandez right behind.

Franchitti, however, had a problem-plagued day suffering from clutch failure in both the morning practice session and qualifying in his primary Honda-powered machine. The team rolled out his backup car during qualifying, but that car also suffered from mechanical problems and left the former race winner (1999) and pole qualifier (1998-99) a disappointed 17th overall on the day.

Paul Tracy (#26 Team KOOL Green Honda) Second Fastest Qualifier: "It was a great effort by the team today. I was able to post the (qualifying) time almost right away, on my first set of tires. Then maybe we got a bit overly cautious, and spent a lot of time sitting in the pits watching others take a run at us. It looked like that strategy was going to work, but then Bruno (Junqueira) put his lap in to beat us right at the end of the session, and there wasn't enough time left to respond."

-honda-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Bruno Junqueira , Adrian Fernandez , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Tony Kanaan , Mo Nunn