Team Rahal's Gigante driver Michel Jourdain Jr. claimed his fifth podium finish of the season by taking second in the Molson Indy Toronto. Jourdain, third in the Champ Car World Series championship, started third and drove a text book race to...
Team Rahal's Gigante driver Michel Jourdain Jr. claimed his fifth podium finish of the season by taking second in the Molson Indy Toronto. Jourdain, third in the Champ Car World Series championship, started third and drove a text book race to finish second.
The day belonged to Canadian Paul Tracy who dominated the race leading all 112 laps and at one point building a lead of over 35-seconds on second place.
Jourdain was running third when the leaders stopped for the final pit stop on lap 81. The Gigante pit crew turned in a brilliant pit stop and claimed a position for Jourdain edging the Newman-Haas crew of Bruno Junqueira.
Jourdain and Team Rahal had a final shot at Tracy with a restart on lap 85, but Tracy quickly pulled out to a comfortable gap and cruised home with a four-second victory.
"Second is like a win today because Paul was so dominate," said Jourdain. "I just hope someday I can experience in Mexico the feeling Paul has of winning in his home country. When I saw how strong and fast he was our goal became to lose the least amount of point possible. We did that by finishing second. It is good for us to get back on the podium after the last couple of races. We ran well at Portland and Cleveland but mistakes cost us a chance to be on the podium. I am happy that we finished second. I lost a spot on the start and we had to be patient to get up to second. The Gigante crew was fantastic today and their work on the last stop is why I am standing on the second step of the podium and not one lower."
The runner-up result established a career high in points (113) for Jourdain in just the tenth race of the season. It is the third time this season that Jourdain has finished as a runner-up to Tracy.
After ten rounds of the Champ Car World Series Tracy leads the chase for the Vanderbilt Cup with 139 points, 15 better than Junqueira (124) and 26 ahead of Jourdain (113). Nine races remain in the 2003 season.
The Champ Car World Series will take a week off before returning to Canada for the Molson Indy Vancouver July 25-27. Tracy will look to make it consecutive wins in his native country while Jourdain and Junqueira will look to cut into their championship deficit.