CHAMPCAR/CART: Toyota Motorsports Fontana qualifying report

Da Matta's Front Row Leads Five Toyotas In Top 10 At Fontana DA MATTA ON FRONT ROW - Cristiano da Matta's second in qualifying today gives him three front-row starting spots this season and is the sixth time he's qualified in one of the first...

Da Matta's Front Row Leads Five Toyotas In Top 10 At Fontana

DA MATTA ON FRONT ROW - Cristiano da Matta's second in qualifying today gives him three front-row starting spots this season and is the sixth time he's qualified in one of the first two rows this season. Da Matta's two 2001 victories have come from the second (Mexico) and third (Australia) starting positions. The 1998 Indy Lights champion has now qualified in the top three in each of his last two races.

DA MATTA SHOOTS FOR CART GRAND SLAM - Cristiano da Matta will be looking to become just the fourth active driver to win on all four varieties of Champ Car circuits - short oval (Chicago, 2000) road course (Mexico, 2001), street circuit (Australia, 2001) and superspeedway.

FITTIPALDI IN TOP-FIVE, LOOKS TO REPEAT - Christian Fittipaldi (Kmart Toyota) earned his top qualifying position of the year with a fifth today in his efforts to become the first repeat Fontana winner. Fittipaldi's strong showing made Newman-Haas Racing the only team in the field to have two cars starting in the top five tomorrow.

FIVE TOYOTA POWERED CARS TO START IN TOP 10 - Bruno Junqueira (Target Toyota), Jimmy Vasser (Visteon Toyota) and Scott Dixon (Nextel/Powerware/Panasonic Toyota) join da Matta and Fittipaldi as Toyota-powered cars in the top 10 by qualifying eighth, ninth and 10th, respectively. Junqueira's Target teammate Memo Gidley was just outside the top-10 in 11th.

TOYOTA SHOOTS FOR FOURTH WIN IN LAST EIGHT RACES - With five cars starting in the top 10 tomorrow, Toyota will be shooting for its fourth win in the last eight CART races this season. Previously, Roberto Moreno won through the streets of Vancouver, Bruno Junqueira won at Road America and Cristiano da Matta won at Australia. Da Matta also won the season-opening race at Monterrey.

Toyota Drivers Fontana Qualifying
2. Cristiano da Matta
5. Christian Fittipaldi
8. Bruno Junqueira
9. Jimmy Vasser
10. Scott Dixon
11. Memo Gidley
15. Mauricio Gugelmin
20. Tora Takagi
23. Roberto Moreno

Quotes:

Cristiano da Matta, #6 Texaco/Havoline/Kmart Toyota: "We kept getting better in each session and Michigan and here I've been happy with the car since it rolled off the truck yesterday morning. The Toyota engine is very strong and it's been very reliable, so I think we have a car that's certainly capable of winning tomorrow."

Marlboro 500 Presented by Toyota, Sun. Nov. 4, 3:30 p.m. EST/12:30 PST, ESPN (Live)

-TOYOTA motorsports

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jimmy Vasser , Memo Gidley , Bruno Junqueira , Roberto Moreno , Christian Fittipaldi , Scott Dixon , Mauricio Gugelmin , Tora Takagi , Cristiano da Matta