HILLIARD, OH . . . Team Rahal Shell driver Kenny Brack, the CART points leader, enters this weekend's Molson Indy Toronto (Sunday 1:00 PM EDT on ESPN), looking to add another accomplishment to his growing list of achievements in the CART FedEx ...
HILLIARD, OH . . . Team Rahal Shell driver Kenny Brack, the CART points leader, enters this weekend's Molson Indy Toronto (Sunday 1:00 PM EDT on ESPN), looking to add another accomplishment to his growing list of achievements in the CART FedEx Championship Series. Brack has notched a pair of wins this year and has a series high five front row starts and he leads the series in laps led and top-fives results. Still Brack is searching for his first road or street win of his Champ Car career.
The irony of that fact is that Brack came to the US in 1997 to join the Indy Racing League and at that time he was considered a road course specialist having dominated the Barber-Saab and European F3000 series. After three seasons in the IRL and 29 races in CART, Brack has gained the reputation as a "ringer" on the ovals. Both of Brack's victories this season came on ovals and he added a runner-up finish at Nazareth to that total.
"It seems no matter what I have done the experts have always said my specialty lies in one type of track or another," said Brack. "When I came to the US to run in the IRL I had a lot to learn about oval racing, but I applied myself and learned from those around me who had experience in such matters. The thing that attracted me to CART when Bobby [Rahal] called to talk about a job was the fact that a driver had to prove himself on both the road and the oval courses. That challenges you as a driver to be your best. We have been close on road and street courses so I know we can be successful. It may just be a case that once we knock that door down the results will come pouring through."
Brack posted runner-up efforts on street courses at Cleveland and Australia last season and a third place finish at Elkhart Lake (road). This season he claimed the pole for the season opening event at Mexico and started on the front row at Long Beach. The last three street courses (Detroit, Portland and Cleveland) Brack has been victimized by qualifying woes.
"Certainly you can make a case that some circumstances out of our control (engine at Portland, rain at Cleveland) is why we haven't been as far forward as we would like over the last couple of races but excuses aren't in our best interest, said Brack. "The bottom line is we know what it takes to be successful and we need to follow through. We know we have a competitive package with the Ford-Cosworth engine and the Lola chassis. That package has won on the ovals and it has won on the road courses."
PAPIS LOOKS TO CONTINUE TORONTO STREAK
Miller Lite driver Max Papis brings a streak three consecutive top-ten results at the Molson Indy Toronto into this weekend's event. Papis started 14th in 2000 but registered an eighth place result in an incident filled race. In 1999 in Papis' first year with Team Rahal, he started 18th but drove brilliantly to a fifth place result notching one of his series high 11 top-five results.
"Toronto is very unique street course," said Papis. "We are in Toronto and so we are racing in front of the Canadian people and they are very enthusiastic about Champ Car racing and they always put on a great show. The track itself is pretty tight which means passing comes at a premium. That means it is critical that you qualify well because otherwise you really have your work cut out for you on race day."