CHAMPCAR/CART: Team Motorola completes first test of 2002 at Sebring

Team Motorola completes first test of 2002 INDIANAPOLIS--Team Motorola and driver Michael Andretti got their 2002 testing season under way Monday at Sebring International Raceway. Over the two-day test, Team Motorola completed 277 trouble-free...

Team Motorola completes first test of 2002

INDIANAPOLIS--Team Motorola and driver Michael Andretti got their 2002 testing season under way Monday at Sebring International Raceway. Over the two-day test, Team Motorola completed 277 trouble-free miles on the 1.65-mile road course with a fast time of 51.5 seconds.

"The new 2002 Reynard is really reliable," said team manager Tony Cotman. "The Team Motorola guys did a great job putting together this new car and we were able to work through our test plan with no real downtime. This was our first time on the track this year with the new Reynard so I'm pretty pleased with what we accomplished."

Monday was the first day back in the race car for Team Motorola driver Michael Andretti since the season finale in Fontana last November.

"It's always nice to regroup and have some time off after the season," said Andretti, "but by the first week of January, I'm ready to get back on the race track and get to work. This was a very good first test. The Team Motorola guys did a great job in preparing the car so we were able to get a lot of work done and I feel like it was a productive two days."

Team Motorola began the test Monday with a project list mainly focusing on the mechanical side of the race car.

"Our goal in this first test was to learn how the 2002 Reynard differs mechanically from previous years," explained Cotman. "We didn't tune the car towards the track over the first day and half but on Tuesday afternoon we did touch on some aerodynamics work. We finished the test a bit early and we were right on pace. It was good test and I think we're establishing a good baseline to start the season."

Cotman was also pleased with the winter conditioning that Andretti has been doing.

"We kept Michael in the car pretty much the whole two days," Cotman said. "And you can tell that the conditioning Michael does during the winter really pays off because he wasn't fatigued at all."

The year 2002 marks Andretti's 19th season in Champ Cars and he currently holds the record for most career victories (41) and most career starts (290) for active Champ Car drivers.

The team returned to their Indianapolis shop last night and will now begin preparations for their next test, which will be at Sneak Preview, February 7-10 in Monterey, California.

-tm-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti