Friday Morning Pit Notes


• Good Morning from picturesque Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in sunny Monterey, California, for the opening day of Champ Car practice in preparation for Sunday’s Bridgestone Grand Prix of Monterey Featuring the Shell 300--Round 5 of the CART FedEx Championship Series. This session (10 a.m.-11:30 a.m.) officially kicks off the weekend, and will be followed by the first of two Champ Car qualifying sessions (2:10 p.m.-3:10 p.m.) slated for the weekend. The weather in Monterey at 9:45 a.m. shows temperatures in the mid-60s as the morning fog continues to burn off.

• The historic course layout at Mazda Raceway measures 2.238-miles in length, and is the third road or street course event of the 2002 season (Tecate Telmex Grand Prix of Monterrey, Round 1 and The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, Round 2). The CART FedEx Championship Series Bridgestone Grand Prix of Monterey Featuring the Shell 300 on Sunday will consist of 87 laps (194.706 miles) around the track which features one of the most challenging sections in all of motorsports--the famed Corkscrew.

• Fuel Allotment--The calculated distance of the race is 201.42 miles, including 2 parade laps and 1 pace lap. The fuel allotment for this race is 108.9 US gallons based on 1.85 miles per gallon, pursuant to 9.6.1B of the 2002 Rule Book.

• Pit Stops--The maximum lap interval for pit stops will be 25 laps.

• NOTEWORTHY: Beginning with this weekend's Bridgestone Grand Prix of Monterey Featuring the Shell 300, the Herdez Competition entry with driver Mario Dominguez (Herdez Ford-Cosworth/Lola/Bridgestone) will sport a new car number, #55, moving from its traditional #16 …"This is the next step in a long line of changes and adjustments that we've been making to the team since 2000," explained Managing Director Keith Wiggins. "It's really just a part of the continued development of the new team called Herdez Competition from the legacy of Bettenhausen Motorsports. While it's not one of the more 'technical' changes we've made, we feel it is significant in its own way."

• The #6 Newman/Haas Racing entry will be piloted by Cristiano da Matta, but is named the Chevron Toyota/Lola/Bridgestone this weekend, as it will be for a total of six West coast events this season.

• CART FedEx Championship Series Starter Jim Swintal waves the GREEN FLAG at 10 a.m. to open the first session of practice at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca for the Champ Cars.

• At 10:09 a.m., #20 BELL is fastest early on in the session with a lap of 1:15.113 seconds (107.262 mph).

• At 10:15 a.m., #5 TAKAGI is fastest with a 1:12.675 seconds (110.862 mph), followed by #20 BELL with a 1:13.496 (109.622 mph), #39 ANDRETTI with a 1:14.281 (108.464 mph), #52 NAKANO with a 1:16.464 (105.367 mph) and #11 FITTIPALDI with a 1:19.896 (100.841 mph).

• At 10:21 a.m., #10 KANAAN gets sideways entering Turn 3, saves the car and continues.

• At 10:23 a.m., #5 TAKAGI laps at 1:12.009 seconds (111.886 mph) and turns in the fastest time of the session.

• At 10:25 a.m., #5 TAKAGI improves to a time of 1:11.715 (112.313 mph) on his 10th lap, followed by #10 KANAAN with a 1:12.217 (111.564 mph), #12 BRACK with a 1:12.437 (111.225 mph), #11 FITTIPALDI with a 1:12.899 (110.520 mph) and #20 BELL with a 113.496 (109.622 mph).

• At 10:27 a.m., #27 FRANCHITTI has spun driver’s right in Turn 3 and continued.

• At 10:32 a.m., #11 FITTIPALDI is fastest with a lap of 1:11.644 seconds (112.456 mph).

• RED FLAG at 10:33 a.m. for #33 TAGLIANI who has spun driver’s left in Turn 3. #33 TAGLIANI will be pulled out of the gravel trap, restarted by the Simple Green CART Safety Team and then serve an eight-minute penalty for the stoppage.

• GREEN FLAG restart at 10:36 a.m.

• RED FLAG at 10:40 a.m. for #26 TRACY who has spun driver’s left in Turn 3. After two incidents and numerous offs in Turn 3, the Simple Green CART Safety Team takes a moment to clean up the area which is littered with gravel. #26 TRACY will also serve an eight-minute penalty.

• GREEN FLAG at 10:47 a.m. #11 FITTIPALDI still remains on atop the speed chart with a best lap time of 1:11.664 (112.456 mph).

• At 10:50 a.m., #10 KANAAN reported to have done a 180-deegree spin on course and continues.

• At 10:53 a.m., #12 BRACK is now fastest with a lap of 1:11.204 seconds (113.151 mph).

• At 10:56 a.m., #6 DA MATTA turns the fastest lap of the session with a 1:10.083 (114.961 mph).

• At 11 a.m., with 30 minutes remaining #6 is still on top, followed by #12 BRACK with a 111.204 (113.151 mph), #32 CARPENTIER with a 1:11.355 (112.911 mph), #10 KANAAN with a 1:11.396 (112.847 mph) and #11 FITTIPALDI with a 1:11.412 (112.821 mph).

• At 11:06 a.m., #4 JUNQUEIRA (53 mph) has been warned by CART Officials for exceeding the pit lane speed limit of 50 mph.

• At 11:08 a.m., #52 NAKANO reported off and on driver’s right in Turn 8 and continued.

• At 11:09 a.m., #10 reported as having a cut right rear tire and is in the pits.

• At 11:12 a.m., #6 DA MATTA remains fastest with a lap of 1:10.083 (114.916 mph), followed by #10 KANAAN with a 1:11.140 (113.253 mph), #12 BRACK with a 1:11.204 (113.161 mph), #32 CARPENTIER with a 1:11.355 (112.911 mph) and #11 FITTIPALDI with a 1:11.412 (112.821 mph).

• At 11:15 a.m., #51 FERNANDEZ spins driver’s left in Turn 3 and continues.

• At 11:19 a.m., #22 PAPIS turns the fifth fastest lap of the session with a lap of 1:11.361 seconds (112.902 mph). #27 FRANCHITTI has been clocked by CART Officials at 51 mph in pit lane.

• At 11:23 a.m., #22 PAPIS moves up to fourth on the speed chart with a lap of 1:11.219 seconds (113.127 mph).

• RED/CHECKERED FLAG is waved at 11:29 a.m. for an incident involving #11 FITTIPALDI and #33 TAGLIANI approaching Turn 7. #11 FITTIPALDI was slow on course driver’s left when #33 TAGLIANI swerved at speed to avoid him which resulted in contact with the wall diver’s right. Both driver’s walked away from the incident and are involved in a lengthy discussion at the scene of the incident. #6 DA MATTA is fastest in the session with a 1:10.083-second lap (114.961 mph), followed by #10 KANAAN with a 1:11.140 (113.153 mph), #12 BRACK with a 1:11.204 (113.151 mph), #22 PAPIS with a 1:11.219 (113.127 mph) and #32 CARPENTIER with a 1:11.355 (112.911 mph).

• CART FedEx Championship Series action continues this afternoon with the first round of qualifying (2:10–3:10 p.m.).

• Bridgestone Tire engineers report that track temperatures ranged from 84° to 105° F, and air temperature from 64° to 75° F, during the first Champ Car practice session at Mazda Raceway.

Courtesy CART

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