Montreal qualifying summary

Spengler takes pole for Montreal Fran-Am race; St. Hippolyte, Quebec driver to lead field of 15 for tomorrow's Fran-Am race at the Molson Indy Montreal. Montreal, Quebec, Canada (August 24, 2002) Bruno Spengler of St. Hippolyte captured his...

Spengler takes pole for Montreal Fran-Am race; St. Hippolyte, Quebec driver to lead field of 15 for tomorrow's Fran-Am race at the Molson Indy Montreal.

Montreal, Quebec, Canada (August 24, 2002) Bruno Spengler of St. Hippolyte captured his second consecutive and second career Fran-Am 2000 pole today after his time from yesterday's first round of qualifying held for the fastest overall time following today's second qualifying session. Spengler also led the charts in today's qualifying round, but his time of 1:41.644 set yesterday bested his 1:41.670 lap today around the 2.709-mile Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve. His Team Basi/TCS Racing teammate Scott Jenkins, of Portland, Oregon, will start second tomorrow after his 1:42.346 lap set today. Trois-Rivieres' Marc-Antoine Camirand is credited with starting third.

"So far, this weekend has gone as we had hoped," said Spengler, who won last weekend's Fran-Am 2000 race at the Mosport Grand Prix from the pole. "We didn't really gain in that last session, but we know we have a good, consistent car for the race. My comfort level is very high and I think we'll be in a good position to win tomorrow."

"We picked up some speed in that session, but it wasn't enough to catch Bruno," said Jenkins, who qualified on pole is his first-ever Fran-Am race at the Molson Indy Vancouver last month. "But, the car is running very well, and I feel that I have the track pretty much figured out. It should be a good race. Hopefully, Bruno and I can get together and break away from everyone else."

"I'm really having a good time out here," said Camirand, who last won at Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve in a FF1600 race in 1997. "Naturally, I would like to be at the front, but we have gained a lot of speed every time we drive the car. The race will be different than practice or qualifying. And we are all close enough that any of us stand a good chance of winning."

Gormely, Ontario's Dan McMullen will start fourth. Vancouver race winner Sean McIntosh will start from the fifth position, followed by Galen Puccini, Michael Brookes, and Montreal native Chris Green. Tomorrow's Fran-Am on-track activities begin with a 10-minute warm-up at 8:00 am, followed by the 18-lap race at 9:05 am ET.

The Fran-Am 2000 North American Pro Championship is a cousin of Formula Renault in Europe, South America and China. Each Fran-Am 2000 race features a $25,000 Michelin International supported cash prize fund, with the overall series champion winning a ride with a leading Formula Renault team for the 2003 European series. Formula Renault is recognized worldwide as a primary feeder for the Formula One stars of tomorrow. Recent graduates include McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen (who went straight to Formula One from Formula Renault) as well as Sauber's Felipe Massa.

The Fran-Am 2000 race car features a spec-Tatuus carbon-fiber monocoque chassis, sealed 2.0-liter/186-horsepower motor (capable of running an entire season without a rebuild), 6-speed sequential gearbox, and spec-Michelin Sport racing tires.

Further information on the Fran-Am series is available at www.fran-am.com

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Series Other open wheel
Drivers Kimi Raikkonen , Marc-Antoine Camirand , Felipe Massa , Bruno Spengler , Galen Puccini , Dan McMullen , Chris Green , Sean McIntosh
Teams Sauber