CHAMPCAR/CART: Toronto: Team Motorola preview

INDIANAPOLIS, In.--Team Motorola and driver Michael Andretti are dusting off their Canadian passports in preparation for this weekend's Molson Indy Toronto and are hoping that history is repeated.  Last year in Toronto Michael and the team pulled...

INDIANAPOLIS, In.--Team Motorola and driver Michael Andretti are dusting off their Canadian passports in preparation for this weekend's Molson Indy Toronto and are hoping that history is repeated.  Last year in Toronto Michael and the team pulled off an impressive feat, going from a first lap incident that dropped them to 26th position to an amazing drive through the field that earned Andretti his record breaking seventh victory on the streets of Toronto and the first victory for Team Motorola.  "Last year was amazing," said general manager Kim Green.  "We were pretty much running dead last and so we took a risk with Michael's pit strategy and it paid off with a victory."

Andretti is no stranger to victory on the 1.755-mile temporary street course at Exhibition Place in downtown Toronto having posted a record seven victories (1989, '91, '92, '94, '95, 2000 and 2001) at the venue.  "I'm always asked why I do so well in Toronto," stated Andretti.  "Believe me, if I knew I would replicate that strategy at every track we run.  In fact, I've led more laps at Indianapolis than I have in Toronto yet I have no victories at Indy and seven in Toronto.  I truly don't feel like I do anything different in Toronto than I do at Indy so I don't know what it is."

Andretti and Team Motorola are looking forward to a good weekend in Toronto after not finishing the race last weekend in Chicago due to a mechanical problem.  "We were running well in Chicago and had an opportunity for a good finish, so it was very disappointing not to finish the race," said Green.  "We've turned our attention to Toronto and now we'll continue our preparations for this weekend and plan on a having a good finish and earning championship points."

After not completing the race in Chicago, Andretti and Team Motorola dropped to tenth place in the championship hunt at 34 points.  Cristiano daMatta is still in first place in the championship race with 95 total points after consecutive victories in Laguna, Portland and Chicago.  Bruno Junqueira has held onto second place with 70 points and Michael's technical partner Dario Franchitti rounds out the top three in the championship with 64 points.  Paul Tracy, also a technical partner, is in eighth place with 36 points.

Andretti is in his19th Champ Car season and currently leads all active Champ Car drivers in number of wins at 42, number of poles at 32, number of starts with 297 and laps led with 6,563.

Practice for the Molson Indy Toronto begins on Friday morning at 10:00 a.m. ET with provisional qualifying at 3:45 p.m. ET Friday and final qualifying will follow on Saturday at 1:45 p.m. ET.  The race will be shown live on CBS Sunday, July 7 at 1:30 p.m. ET.

-tm-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Bruno Junqueira , Paul Tracy , Dario Franchitti , Kim Green , Cristiano da Matta