DORRICOTT RACING IS BUILDING MOMENTUM HEADING INTO PORTLAND SONOMA, Calif. (June 12, 1998) - If first-year Indy Lights drivers Philipp Peter, of Monaco, and Oriol Servia, of Catalonia, Spain, learned anything from Detroit's Belle Isle...
DORRICOTT RACING IS BUILDING MOMENTUM HEADING INTO PORTLAND
SONOMA, Calif. (June 12, 1998) - If first-year Indy Lights drivers Philipp Peter, of Monaco, and Oriol Servia, of Catalonia, Spain, learned anything from Detroit's Belle Isle one race ago, it is that Dorricott Racing is maturing as a team and ready to mount a serious down-to-the wire second-half charge for the coveted PPG-Dayton Indy Lights Championship when CART's "Official Development Series" makes its 11th annual visit to Portland International Raceway and the Budweiser/G.I. Joe's 200, Sunday, June 21.
The 38 lap/74.746mile Indy Lights sprint, which is round seven of the 14-race series, is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. PT and is the featured support race to the Budweiser/G.I. Joe's 200, presented by Texaco/Havoline, for the CART FedEx Champ car race later that day.
Peter, who is tied with Brazilian Felipe Giaffone for sixth place in the Indy Lights championship with 37 points, impressed Indy Lights followers at Long Beach in round two when he finished fourth place after starting fifth.
Peter's street circuit cunning was also instrumental at Detroit when a first lap spin-and-stop by Naoki Hattori blocked Peter's line. By the time Peter resumed the race, he had fallen from his eighth place starting position to dead last in 22nd. Remarkably, Peter unleashed an incredible 12-position climb to finish 10th. Portland will be his first Indy Lights race on a permanent road course, but an opportunity to showcase his road racing acumen. "We're looking forward to Portland," said Peter. "We had a chance to test for one and one half days earlier this year, but unfortunately it was raining so we only had a half day with a dry track. The good thing is we know our set-up for wet weather, and from what I understand there are usually one or more sessions with rain at Portland.
"Portland is a little more similar to what I'm used to racing in Europe. I like the fast corners and the long straight-away. It gives you a chance to overtake slower cars and that makes for exciting racing. I also think our qualifying strategy will be much better since we've learned that things can change quickly that affect the track or shorten the session."
Servia's Indy Lights street course debut at Long Beach was hampered by a practice session brush with a wall and a race related bump from another driver which relegated him to 16th. Detroit, however, was an awakening for him and the crew as they prepared a fast, balanced car which Servia piloted to sixth place. In knowing he can race with the frontrunners on unfamiliar circuits, Servia is looking forward to Portland because it is a track that is reminiscent of road courses in Europe. "It's good we've already tested at Portland because we were able to develop a good wet weather set-up," said Servia. "It also helped me because I had a chance to learn the track."
"Portland reminds me of the European tracks I'm used to running. It's has some characteristics of a French track I liked called Nogaro. My first race win in France was at Nogaro in Formula Renault Elf Campus. It's also going to be nice to run a race without being three feet from cement walls at any given time. My expectation is to be running with the leaders."
Dorricott Racing is a year-round professional motorsports organization based at Sears Point International Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. Race results, team and sponsor information may be viewed on Dorricott Racing's web site, http://www.dorricottracing.com.
ESPN2 will provide same-day coverage of the Portland Indy Lights race, Sunday, June 21, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET (4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. PT).