INDIANAPOLIS (September 23, 2002) - Jimmy Vasser's recent resurgence in the CART FedEx Championship has gone hand-in-hand with the climb that the crew of the Team Rahal ...
INDIANAPOLIS (September 23, 2002) - Jimmy Vasser's recent resurgence in the CART FedEx Championship has gone hand-in-hand with the climb that the crew of the Team Rahal #8 Shell Ford-Cosworth/Lola Bridgestone machine has made in the standings of the Craftsman Pit Crew Challenge, securing a chance to earn $50,000 with its skill on Pit Lane.
A string of five consecutive points-paying finishes for Vasser has coincided with strong performances by the Rahal pit squad, which has now clinched a spot in the season-ending CPCC shootout at Fontana in which the fastest pit crew can win $50,000. The pit gang servicing the #8 machine has locked up a spot in the final competition - which will take place at California Speedway on November 2 - with six other teams fighting for the final three places heading into the October 6 Grand Prix Americas, which will be the last chance for teams to qualify for the head-to-head shootout.
Points are awarded to teams by virtue of time spent on pit lane during a race, with scoring based on the CART system, as the fastest team earns 20 points on a weekend. Heading into the final CPCC weekend, the Player's/Forsythe Racing team of Alex Tagliani holds down the second spot with 114 points, but has the #6 Newman/Haas squad of series leader Cristiano da Matta just two points behind. The pressure is off the da Matta team in terms of making the final shootout however, as it earned a berth in the battle for $50,000 after winning the Wild Card entry at Chicago.
Behind the #6 car is a quartet of teams separated by just four points in a race for the final spot. The Player's/Forsythe Racing crew of Patrick Carpentier improved their standing by taking 20 points home from England and is fourth with 105 points with the Team Rahal gang servicing the #9 of Michel Jourdain Jr. sitting in a tie with the Target Chip Ganassi Racing unit of Bruno Junqueira with 102. The Newman/Haas team with the #11 machine of Christian Fittipaldi is still in the hunt as well, bringing 101 points to the Miami event.