CHAMPCAR/CART: Surfers Paradise: Patrick Racing preview

JACKSON, MI - - OCTOBER 21, 2003 - - Round 18 - - 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford - Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol Servia is looking to finish the 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series...

JACKSON, MI - - OCTOBER 21, 2003 - - Round 18 - - 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford - Visteon/Patrick Racing driver Oriol Servia is looking to finish the 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford season with strong showings in the last two races beginning this weekend a the Lexmark Indy 300 in Surfers Paradise, Australia.

Servia, who pilots the #20 Visteon/Patrick Racing entry, which is powered by Ford-Cosworth and uses a Lola chassis with Bridgestone tires, is having the best season of his CART career. He is currently seventh in the championship standings with 108 points and solid showings in the final two events of the 2003 season would be the icing on the cake.

"The Visteon/Patrick Racing Team is really looking forward to going to Australia and getting back on the track," Servia began. "The last two races we have not achieved the results we wanted, but the team is very confident and we know we can win," he noted. "We have worked hard all season and had some good results, but we want to finish off the season strong. The whole Visteon/Patrick Racing Team deserves a win and it would be great to get one in Australia then head to Fontana for the last race of the year with momentum," Servia explained.

The talented 29-year-old Spaniard will be making his fourth start on the 2.795-mile, 11-turn Surfers Paradise temporary street circuit. In three previous races his best starting position is ninth, in 2002, and his best finish is ninth in 2000.

"Australia is one of my favorite circuits in the whole series," Servia said. "It is a fast circuit and I really like the quick chicanes. The Visteon/Patrick Racing Team should have a good setup for Australia and I am looking forward to the race," he commented.

Servia went on to say, "The other thing that makes Australia such a great race is the atmosphere. The promoter does a fantastic job and the fans are knowledgeable and very friendly, which makes it one of the most enjoyable races we have. In fact, I am going to Australia early to help promote the race and do some site seeing with some of the other drivers and friends."

Servia has established a number of personal CART career records already this season. Among the marks he has set are career high second place showings at Milwaukee and Montreal, a single season high nine top-10 placements, a single season high seven top-five showings and a single season high three podium finishes including consecutive podium performances (Montreal, second and Denver, third) for the first time in his career. The resident of Miami, Florida has also set personal CART career records for consecutive top-six finishes, seven, top-10 showings, seven and points paying performances, eight. In addition, he has earned career high qualifying positions at Montreal and Denver where he started second, qualified in the top-10 a CART career high 16 consecutive times, earned a single season high 16 top-10 starting positions and a single season high seven top-five starting positions. Servia has finished in the points in 11 of the 17 races this season and placed in the top-six in nine of his last 14 events.

Now in his fourth CART season and second with Visteon/Patrick Racing, Servia will be making his 71st career CART start and 28th for the team this weekend in Australia. He has earned 32 top-ten finishes including 13 top- five showings with four podium performances in 70 CART starts. In his 27 starts with Visteon/Patrick Racing, 10 in 2002 and 17 this year, Servia has finished in the points 16 times with 13 top-10 finishes, nine top-five showings and three podiums.

The Lexmark Indy 300 will be televised live on Speed Channel on Sunday, October 26th at 12:30 PM (ET). The race will re-air on Speed Channel in its's entire 2.5 hour block on Sunday, October 26th at 2:30 PM (ET).

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Oriol Servia