Surfers Paradise, Queensland, Australia (October 14, 2000) -- Dario Franchitti and Paul Tracy set the third and fourth fastest times in today's final qualifying session to make up the second row for Sunday's Honda Indy 300 in Surfers Paradise, ...
Surfers Paradise, Queensland, Australia (October 14, 2000) -- Dario Franchitti and Paul Tracy set the third and fourth fastest times in today's final qualifying session to make up the second row for Sunday's Honda Indy 300 in Surfers Paradise, Australia. Franchitti's best lap around the 2.795-mile street circuit was in 1 minute, 32.059 seconds, an average speed of 109.299 mph. Tracy's lap of 1:32.328, an average speed of 107.753 mph, puts him fourth on the grid.
Juan Montoya earned his seventh pole position of the season today, eclipsing Gil de Ferran in the final moments with a lap of 1:31.722 (109.701 mph). De Ferran, who leads Tracy by 19 points in the championship, will line up second with a lap of 1:31.827 (109.576 mph).
The Champ car drivers take to the track one more time prior to the race with a 30-minute warm up beginning at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow morning (8:00p.m. Saturday night in the Eastern Time zone). The 65-lap race starts at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday (12:00 a.m. Sunday morning in Eastern Time zone), and will be televised live by ESPN.
PAUL TRACY , #26 TEAM KOOL GREEN HONDA/REYNARD: (4th with a lap-time of 1:32.328 seconds / 108.981 mph)
"With all the red flags I was getting pretty frustrated. I had a few good laps going and then it would go red. That happened a couple of times. We went out with about four minutes to go and really had to push the KOOL car hard to get the lap in. Fortunately, we got one in. The car was pretty good, although I think we could have done a better time. But to be fourth, sitting right behind Gil (de Ferran) is exactly where we need to be to put pressure on him. I'm going to race my own race and run every lap as hard as I can. Obviously, Dario's not in the championship so he's in a little different position, He's going to do what he can to help us by running hard and pushing Gil. There's a lot of pressure on Gil tomorrow. There are a lot of guys who don't have anything to lose, and he's got a lot to lose. I don't feel any pressure and I've got everything to gain."
DARIO FRANCHITTI , #27 TEAM KOOL GREEN HONDA/REYNARD: (3rd with a lap-time of 1:32.059 seconds / 109.299 mph)
"It was pretty exciting towards the end of my fast lap, but I got it done. I was off to a good start on that last lap, but then made a mistake down in the turn five area and made another one in the next corner, so I just came in. There wasn't much point in trying to finish the lap. You're pushing so hard here, that it just takes one slight mistake and it's all over. I'm disappointed not to be on the pole, but third isn't too bad. There was more grip this afternoon than we've seen all weekend, but it was difficult to get a time with all those red flags. As long as it doesn't rain again tonight I think the track will be in good shape for the race. We've still got some work to do to make KOOL car faster, but I think we'll get there."
, TEAM KOOL GREEN OWNER:
"Today went a lot better for us. We felt like we had a good shot at the pole and we're knocking on the door in third and fourth. And third and fourth is really big around here -- you've got to be up front. I think Dario and Paul have a lot of confidence for the race. From where we're starting we can push, and push hard. I know we've got a lot of Aussies pulling for Team KOOL Green. I hope we can give them something to cheer about tomorrow."