CHAMPCAR/CART: Team Kool; Green drivers preview the RIO 200


PAUL TRACY, #26 Team KOOL Green Honda/Reynard/Firestone:
(Started 12th / Finished 15th at Rio in 1999 ; Currently 1st in the standings with 34 points)

"We're only two races into a very long season, but I've got say that I like the way things have gone so far for the #26 Team KOOL Green crew. Leading the championship makes you think about winning the title, but we know we've got a long way to go to reach that goal. We also know that if we keep working together as a team, and not make too many mistakes, we should be in the hunt heading to Fontana (season finale).

"But we're taking it one race at a time and we've got our sights set squarely on scoring more points in Rio. It's an interesting track and it usually produces an interesting race. We're on a bit of a roll, we think we've got a good setup for the Rio circuit and I've had some success there in the past (1997 winner), so we're not lacking any confidence heading down there."

DARIO FRANCHITTI , #27 Team KOOL Green Honda/Reynard/Firestone:
(Started 2nd / Finished 2nd at Rio in 1999 ; Currently 17th in the standings with 2 points)

"Obviously I'm disappointed with our lack of results so far this season, but there's no reason to panic. We know we've got a good package in the Honda-Reynard -- it's certainly working for Paul -- so we'll just stay the course and continue to work on fine tuning our setups.

"Fortunately, Team KOOL Green has always given me a good car at Rio and I certainly enjoy driving the circuit. It's fairly basic, but it's got some fun corners and a couple of decent passing opportunities. We'll be looking for every advantage that we can find to start up front because it's usually tight quarters once the race starts. It's a great show for the Brazilian fans, who without question are some of the most knowledgeable fans in the world. They have a passion for the sport and Brazil has produced a lot of quality drivers, especially the half-dozen or so currently racing in CART. They're very good."

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Series IndyCar