Surfers Paradise, Queensland, Australia (October 15, 2000) - Dario Franchitti and Paul Tracy had tough luck in today's Honda Indy 300, as both Team KOOL Green drivers were taken out of the race by contact with cars from behind. Franchitti's day...
Surfers Paradise, Queensland, Australia (October 15, 2000) - Dario Franchitti and Paul Tracy had tough luck in today's Honda Indy 300, as both Team KOOL Green drivers were taken out of the race by contact with cars from behind.
Franchitti's day ended almost before it began, as he got taken out in a multi-car incident in the first chicane on the first lap. The incident also took out pole sitter Juan Montoya and points leader Gil de Ferran who had started second. Tracy came through the carnage unscathed to take the lead, which he stretched to more than 10 seconds over second-place Michael Andretti. But on the 11th lap Tracy's throttle stuck wide open and he was forced to go down the escape road and stalled the engine. He got restarted and began a typical-for-Paul-Tracy drive through the field. He was up to fourth place on the 44th lap when Oriol Servia hit him while trying to pass. The contact put Tracy into the wall, ending his day.
Adrian Fernandez took the race win, with Kenny Brack and Jimmy Vasser finishing second and third. Fernandez' win moves him into second place in the championship, six points behind Gil de Ferran (153 - 147), with one race to go. Tracy and Brack are tied with 134 points, but Tracy is credited with third place due to more wins this season.
, #26 TEAM KOOL GREEN HONDA/REYNARD:
(Started 4th / Finished 17th / 3rd in points standings with 134)
"The start was good and I made up a couple of spots. Then Juan (Montoya) clipped Gil (de Ferran) and they both crashed. I was fortunate to not hit anything and get through it okay. The KOOL car was just awesome at that point and we were pulling away from the field. Then the throttle stuck wide-open going into a braking zone - I don't know why that happened. We got started again, made a pit stop and then started making our way up through the field. I really think we could have gotten a top four finish and made up some ground in the points, but then I got hit by Servia. I didn't see what happened, but I guess he jumped over one of the curbs going into the chicane and ran into the back of me, knocking me sideways into the wall. It's really disappointing. Today should have been our day but it wasn't. Now we go to Fontana trying to score maximum points."
BARRY GREEN, TEAM KOOL GREEN OWNER:
"Restarts are really tough at this place. Paul (Tracy) and Max (Papis) might have got together on the restart, but I don't know what happened after that. Servia came through and certainly finished him off. We were fighting an uphill battle. We had something go wrong with the throttle cable earlier on and that put Paul off the track and out of the lead. And then it was a fight all the way back. It's too bad. We would have scored some big points and still be in a good position to challenge for the championship going into Fontana. But never count Team KOOL Green out. We've got one race to go with a bunch of points and our cars are very fast there. We'll be back in a couple of weeks and fighting hard."
, #27 TEAM KOOL GREEN HONDA/REYNARD:
(Started 3rd / Finished 25th / 12th in points standings with 92)
"I need to see some more replays to know exactly what happened. There was a lot going on down there. What I saw was Juan (Montoya) and Gil (de Ferran) getting together. From that point, I can't say. I saw Juan go into a spin, so I backed off and got on the brakes. I guess Jimmy (Vasser) had no where to go and he hit me. Everybody was pretty much checking up for the incident in front. And yet again, we're the one's who get caught out."