The Molson Indy Toronto pre-race quoteboard PAUL TRACY ( ...
The Molson Indy Toronto pre-race quoteboard
PAUL TRACY (#3 Player's/Indeck Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"It's a great feeling to be able to go to Toronto for the first Canadian race of the season with the lead in the championship. Team Player's deserves a lot of credit because the guys have consistently provided me with a car that can run at the front. You don't necessarily have to win every race, but if you can stay in the hunt and string some podium finishes together, you have a good shot at the championship. That formula has worked well for us so far, through the first half of the season. But we're certainly taking nothing for granted. Coming home for a race at this stage of the season provides added incentive to keep plugging away toward our goal. I can't think of a better way to celebrate the 10th anniversary of my race victory in Toronto than by winning this year. It would be a big help in the drivers' standings, but more than that, it would be fantastic to win another one for the Canadian fans who have been so supportive to me and to Team Player's over the years. Toronto is one of my favorite tracks in the series, but I realize there's no such thing as a home-track advantage. We're going to need to qualify well because it's a very street circuit with limited passing. We've had some success getting on the front row and, hopefully, that will continue in Toronto."
BRUNO JUNQUEIRA (#1 PacifiCare Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"Toronto is a very difficult street track. Unfortunately the two years I have raced there I have been running strong in both retired after contact at the same corner - the hairpin. The first year it was with Christian (Fittipaldi) and last year it was with Townsend Bell who made a big mistake and took me out of the race. I had a similar situation with my results in Cleveland before I went there this year with Newman/Haas and finished third. Hopefully I can get the same type of result in Toronto and get some points. (Has Paul Tracy had an impact of the popularity of CART in Canada?) "For sure Paul Tracy is one of the biggest CART stars of all time. He's aggressive, he's very controversial and I think the fans love it. He's put a lot of guys out of the race so maybe the drivers don't like him as much as the fans but for sure he has made the Canadian fans watch and follow CART. He's one of the greatest Canadian drivers ever but hopefully we can beat him in Toronto for his home race and make him finish second."
MICHEL JOURDAIN JR. (#9 Gigante Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"I am looking forward to Toronto because it is one of the great events on the Champ Car schedule. The fans turn out in great numbers and are very supportive of the drivers and the teams. The Gigante car has been great and the crew has been working hard, but we just haven't been able to get back on the podium since we won at Milwaukee. The Gigante car has been very strong on the street courses so there is a good reason to think we can get back to the podium this weekend."
PATRICK CARPENTIER (#32 Player's/Indeck Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"I'm overdue for a win in Toronto. There have been times when we just haven't had the car to be able to run at the front on the Toronto street circuit. And there have been other times when we just plain had bad luck. You need a bit of both to land on the podium in Toronto. It's a challenging circuit with a great backstretch for flat-out racing. And there's a decent passing lane going into the hairpin. It's a little bumpy, but we're not going to face anything near the bumps that we did in Cleveland last weekend. But also, unlike Cleveland, the Toronto street circuit has walls that always seem very close when you're running laps. I'm glad there are at least a few days to rest up before Toronto because Cleveland was such a long, tough race that it took a lot out of me. I was quite drained physically as well as mentally after we got done Saturday night. Plus, my left wrist, that got caught when the steering wheel snapped back in the qualifying session, was really sore during the race. But I don't expect it will bother me this weekend in Toronto. I'm usually quite good at blocking things like that out of my mind. Anyway, being able to race at home for the first time this season will certainly help to make me forget about any discomfort with my wrist."
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS (#2 Lilly Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"I'm looking forward to racing in Toronto. I have heard that it is a very popular race for the drivers and the fans because the city is great and so are the fans. Newman/Haas won from pole and also finished third there last year and we just had that same result in Cleveland so hopefully we can repeat that in Toronto. We have finally earned a good result after a couple of bad races and we hope to carry over this result. I have seen the layout of the track from watching the past races on video and it looks difficult and interesting. The Lilly car has been good on the street courses and we have some very good test days lately that will hopefully put us in better shape for a good result."
ORIOL SERVIA (#20 Visteon/Patrick Racing Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"It is great to be back on the Toronto street circuit. I always liked this city and track. The Toronto circuit has good braking areas and there are a couple of places where you can pass, which should make for an exciting race. The Visteon/Patrick Racing Team has had some good performances this season, but we have to get on the podium on a regular basis staring now or we will not accomplish our goal of winning a championship."
ADRIAN FERNANDEZ (#51 Tecate/Quaker State/Telmex Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"I always look forward to coming to Toronto. The fans are great and it is a beautiful city. I have been on the podium three times in Toronto and have a lot of memories from here -- my first ever race win in Champ Cars, our first podium as Fernandez Racing. I have had some of the most competitive races of my career here, and my expectations are high for this weekend."
MARIO DOMINGUEZ (#55 Herdez Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"Toronto is one of my favorite races on the entire Champ Car circuit because it is a great street course in a great city with a great atmosphere. It's one of those races that, while it's "work", it's also a lot of fun! The Canadian fans really know their racing and that makes it especially rewarding for the drivers. We had a strong weekend in Cleveland and with the testing that we completed after Portland, I'm feeling very confident that we will be competitive on the street courses coming up in the next two events."
ALEX TAGLIANI (#33 Johnson Controls Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"The Toronto street course is one of the best because of the challenges it offers, and it is where I got a podium two years ago. It's a tough course because of the pavement changes in the corners. There is a transition from cement to concrete in the apex and lots of blind corners, so it's tough on the tires and brakes. The braking zones have kinks and the racing line is protected, so I must manage and conserve the brakes. Champ Car has 19 races all over North America, Mexico and even Europe, and I meet Canadian fans everywhere. It's great to hear them say 'hey I'm Canadian too' or to see my name on a banner with the Canadian flag in a far-away place. I appreciate the support from the Canadian fans and it's great to be home."
DARREN MANNING (#15 RAC/Walker Racing Ford-Cosworth/Reynard/Bridgestone):
"After several weeks of racing on ovals and permanent road courses, I'm looking forward to getting back to a proper street course race, which I love. I've never had a chance to race in Canada before and I'm very much looking forward to the Molson Indy Toronto. I think it will be an exciting weekend on and off the track."
MARIO HABERFELD (#34 Mi-Jack/Conquest Racing Ford-Cosworth/Reynard/Bridgestone):
"It's nice to be going to Canada. This will be my first time there and I've heard that it's a great place. The Canadian fans are very knowledgeable about racing and really seem to enjoy the sport. It will be nice to get back to a street circuit. I really enjoy this type of racing, and it's been quite awhile since we were at Long Beach, so I'm anxious to get back to the streets. Hopefully we'll have better results than we had at Cleveland."
ROBERTO MORENO (#4 Herdez Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"Toronto is a very challenging street course. In the past, I have had good results there and I really enjoy the atmosphere of the city as well as the track itself. In terms of the race, it's all about setting up the car. We have done a lot this year to enhance the development of our car set ups including in-season testing and working on the car on the seven-post rig. The things we are learning in testing should really help us in Toronto and we're looking forward to a good race there."
TIAGO MONTEIRO (#7 Fittipaldi-Dingman Ford-Cosworth/Reynard/Bridgestone):
"I've heard that Toronto is a great, fun track. It's a bit bumpy, but it's supposed to have a great atmosphere. I've never been before, but I've been told that the fans are wonderful. We have a lot of Canadian drivers and I know the fans are crazy about them. Everyone says that I'll enjoy myself. The city does a lot of great off-track events that create even more excitement for the weekend. After a couple of disappointments in Portland and Cleveland, I'm really looking forward to Toronto. We're hoping to get back into the points this weekend and I'm confident that my team will come through for me."
MAX PAPIS (#27 PK Racing Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone)
"I am really excited about Toronto, especially because it has one of the highest population of Italians of any North American city. I have had great success there before, and I am looking forward to continuing to improve and get ahead on our learning curve."
RODOLFO LAVIN (#5 Corona Competition Team Ford-Cosworth/Reynard/Bridgestone):
"The Canadian events are largely regarded as some of the best events on the schedule and I'm thrilled to be returning to Toronto this year to compete in the premier event of the weekend. I've had some good races here in the past and I'm sure with Walker Racing's experience my first Champ Car run here will be a strong one."
GEOFF BOSS (#11 Cross Pens Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"I'm looking forward to Toronto very much. I won the Indy Lights race in Toronto in 1999, so the track has been very good to me and I return with fond memories. It will be my first street race in Champ Car which means that in many ways I'm starting from scratch but I do hope my previous experience in Toronto will help the team to get up to speed quickly. Overall, the track remains one of my favorites in the Champ Car calendar, it's a wonderful city and the crowd has always remained enthusiastic. I'm hopeful for a strong performance."
ALEX SPERAFICO (#19 Dale Coyne Racing Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone):
"The race in Toronto will be my first race in Champ Car. I just expect to have a good weekend that I can finish the race and get good experience working with the team during the three days. It's half season, so everybody will be very well prepared for this race, and I am arriving now, so I think it's going to be a good experience to be part of it, and see what's going to happen."