Pacificare Driver Junqueira locked into front row start with provisional pole for Molson Indy Toronto; Lilly Driver Bourdais 10TH OVERALL: Wet conditions hindered the two morning practice sessions therefore the Champ Car field took to the...
Pacificare Driver Junqueira locked into front row start with provisional pole for Molson Indy Toronto; Lilly Driver Bourdais 10TH
Wet conditions hindered the two morning practice sessions therefore the Champ Car field took to the track in provisional qualifying without real knowledge of how well they had prepared for the event before they ran their 15 allowable laps. The track continued to dry during the 10-minute warm-up session and the racing line was mostly dry at the completion of the one-hour session.
BRUNO JUNQUEIRA, #1 PacifiCare Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone: "I've not been lucky in qualifying this season. Out of nine races there were easily seven of them that I could have gone faster but I was able to do that today with a clear track. It was really the first time all season that I have had a clear track in qualifying. We decided to go out early to see if I could get a clear lap. The PacifiCare team did a good job to make sure I had a clear lap and I did. We have been very fast for all of the year but we have had bad luck. We have been consistent all year. I have been always able to finish in the top five, top three except one time. My car was good but not perfect and I believe it was the same for Paul (Tracy) and Michel (Jourdain). Having a guaranteed front row start is great and so is the extra point. Now we are only seven behind Paul (Tracy) so lets see if we can win the race and jump ahead of him in the points. I'm quite happy to be on pole today."
NOTES: It will be his third race here. Started third and finished 14th after a mistake by rookie Townsend Bell caused contact and his retirement from the event in 14th place. Started 20th in rookie season here and finished 13th after contact with Fittipaldi. Both incidents were in the same location - the hairpins currently in second place in the point standings with 110 and is only SEVEN behind leader Tracy who has 117.
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS, #2 Lilly Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone:
"I don't feel okay with the balance of the car so it's hard to push. The set-up on the car doesn't suit me so well for the moment. The only time we really ran in the dry was in qualifying so I didn't get much track time to learn the course or adjust the setup to my style. We only have 15 laps in qualifying so that is not much time if you haven't really run the course yet."
NOTES: Will be his first race here... He earned four poles (3-road course; 1-oval) and three wins in nine events so far. (He started in second place in England and fifth in Long Beach.) Has won a total of six bonus points this season (Friday & Saturday in St. Pete; Saturday in Monterrey, Saturday and Sunday in Germany; Friday in Cleveland). He is currently ranked 5th in the point standings with 74 points.
TEAM NOTES: The team has won SIX races here (da Matta - 2002; Mi. Andretti 2000, 1995, 1992, 1991, 1989) and TWO POLES (da Matta 2002; Mi. Andretti 1991) as well as 12 PODIUM FINISHES (2nd - Mi. Andretti 1998, 1991, 1990), (3rd - Fittipaldi 2002, 1999; Ma. Andretti 1986). LAST YEAR IN TORONTO: da Matta matched a CART record with his fourth consecutive win after leading 112 laps here. Fittipaldi finished third.
ON TAP FOR TOMORROW:
The practice session will take place from 10:00-11:15 AM and final qualifying will begin at 1:45 PM PT. SPEED Channel will televise final qualifying live beginning at 1:30 PM ET.