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2001 Houston Thoughts

TRACK: Consider this. Lime Rock Park in Connecticut is so small and tight that it is called the bullring of road circuits. It is 1.53-miles long with six turns, though when the quick sports car prototypes run there, they add a chicane in place of the uphill turn to prevent them from going airborne. Now, compare that to the Houston street circuit which is virtually the same length -- 1.527-miles. Yet, Houston has ten turns, with concrete lining the edges. So, if Lime Rock is too small for the Champ Cars, what are they doing at Houston?

RACE: Well, it was amazingly clean for the first 37 laps. And just the first 37 laps.

DE FERRAN: Once again, Houston may be the turning point for Gil's championship run.

FRANCHITTI: His early race pass on Kenny Brack is the perfect example of making a split second decision to jump on an opportunity. Exactly what these drivers are paid to do.

GIDLEY: Just how did Memo end up in third place?

TAKAGI: Now, this is the Tora that people were expecting when he came over from Europe with high marks from many F1 drivers.

CASTRONEVES: Not a bad weekend, and with Laguna Seca coming up, Brack better watch out for that other Penske car.

BRACK: Speaking of Kenny, he may be having nightmares of the red and white machines.

NAKANO: He played Tora for this race.

FERNANDEZ: The post race debriefing for his drivers was probably interesting...

JUNQUEIRA: It appears that no matter how good Bruno looks these days, Chip has already decided to get a new driver.

ANDRETTI: Just when it appears Michael really is going to make a run for the championship, he always manages to blow his chances.

SERVIA: Oriol invented a new way to knock a competitor you are mad at out of the race. Instead of punting him off the track -- the old boring method -- Oriol made a banzai pass that he had no hope of pulling off, losing it in front of said competitor, taking the other car out by having him crash into you. Give Servia points for originality.

TAGLIANI: Doink.

GUGELMIN: Despite the DNF, it was a very good weekend for Big Mo.

WILSON: So much for this team's midseason promise.

DIXON: Scott wins the "Racing Isn't Fair" award for this weekend.

TRACY: Is Paul mellowing out? Or just resigned to this season being over? His reaction to falling out of the race was so blasé. Very non-Tracy like.

STAT OF THE WEEKEND: For the past two races, a driver could get a maximum of 43 points (Rockingham qualifying having been rained out), which is exactly what Gil de Ferran got. There's an example of a champion stepping up.

HISTORICAL STAT OF THE WEEKEND: The only other "road" course run by champ cars in Texas was way back in 1913 and 1914 in Galveston -- a 5-mile beach course.

QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND: To Oriol Servia for his refreshing honesty. "The reason we crashed was I made an impossible move." Can you imagine Mario Andretti ever saying that?

QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND RUNNERUP: To Memo Gidley for learning quickly about how to handle Chip Ganassi. After taking out teammate Bruno Junqueira, Gidley was quite straightforward with his car owner, admitting fault. "I knew if I said the wrong thing, he would go from 2000 RPM all the way to the rev limiter."

SCHEDULE: Okay, so who is going to finish second behind Bryan Herta at Laguna Seca?

Copyright 2001 by Deep Throttle. All Rights Reserved.



RACE RESULTS
  Driver Laps
1. de Ferran 100
2. Franchitti 100
3. Gidley 100
4. Takagi(R) 100
5. Castroneves 100
6. da Matta 100
7. Brack 100
8. Fittipaldi 100
9. Papis 100
10. Carpentier 100
11. Vasser 100
12. Kanaan 100
13. Herta 100
14. Fernandez 99
15. Nakano 99
16. Wilson(R) 98
17. Mears(R) 98
18. Dixon(R) 96
19. Tagliani 93
20. Gugelmin 78
21. Andretti 76
22. Moreno 65
23. Junqueira(R) 52
24. Tracy 49
25. Jourdain 37
26. Servia 37

Time of Race
1:54:42.336

Winner's Speed
79.521 mph

Margin of Victory
3.430 sec.

Caution Flags
4 for 16 laps

Lead Changes
None

Most Laps Led
Gil de Ferran

Pole Position
Gil de Ferran

CURRENT STANDINGS
  Driver Pts.
1. de Ferran 163
2. Brack 153
3. Castroneves 133
4. Andretti 125
5. Franchitti 105
6. da Matta 100
7. Dixon(R) 86
  Carpentier 86
9. Kanaan 78
10. Tracy 76
11. Moreno 74
12. Papis 66
13. Fittipaldi 61
14. Vasser 58
15. Tagliani 51
16. Junqueira(R) 50
17. Gidley 46
18. Fernandez 42
19. Servia 40
20. Takagi(R) 29
21. Herta 27
22. Zanardi 24
  Jourdain 24
24. Gugelmin 17
25. Wilson(R) 12
26. Nakano 10
27. Minassian(R) 7
28. Bell(R) 1
 
 
2008 Thoughts
Long Beach

2007 Thoughts
Preseason Las Vegas Long Beach Houston
Portland Cleveland Mont Tremblant Toronto
Edmonton San Jose Road America Belgium
Holland Surfers Paradise Mexico City Postseason

2006 Thoughts
Preseason Long Beach Houston Monterrey
Milwaukee Portland Cleveland Toronto
Edmonton San Jose Denver Montreal
Road America Surfer's Paradise Mexico City Postseason

2005 Thoughts
Preseason Long Beach Monterrey Milwaukee
Portland Cleveland Toronto Edmonton
San Jose Denver Montreal Las Vegas
Surfer's Paradise Mexico City Postseason

2004 Thoughts
Preseason Long Beach Monterrey Milwaukee
Portland Cleveland Toronto Vancouver
Road America Denver Montreal Laguna Seca
Las Vegas Surfer's Paradise Mexico City Postseason

2003 Thoughts
Preseason St. Petersburg Monterrey Long Beach
Brands Hatch Germany Milwaukee Laguna Seca
Portland Cleveland Toronto Vancouver
Road America Mid-Ohio Montreal Denver
Miami Mexico City Surfer's Paradise Postseason

2002 Thoughts
Preseason Monterrey Long Beach Japan
Milwaukee Laguna Seca Portland Chicago
Toronto Cleveland Vancouver Mid-Ohio
Road America Montreal Denver
England Miami Surfer's Paradise
Fontana Mexico City Postseason

2001 Thoughts
Preseason Mexico Long Beach Nazareth
Japan Milwaukee Detroit Portland
Cleveland Toronto Michigan Chicago
Mid-Ohio Road America Vancouver German
England Houston Laguna Seca
Surfer's Paradise Fontana Postseason

2000 Thoughts
Preseason Miami Long Beach Brazil
Japan Nazareth Milwaukee Detroit
Portland Cleveland Toronto Michigan
Chicago Mid-Ohio Road America Vancouver
Laguna Seca Gateway USGP Houston
Surfer's Paradise Fontana Postseason

1999 Thoughts
Preseason Miami Japan Long Beach
Nazareth Brazil Gateway Milwaukee
Portland Cleveland Road America Toronto
U.S. 500 Detroit Mid-Ohio Chicago
Vancouver Laguna Seca Houston
Surfer's Paradise Fontana Postseason

1998 Thoughts
Preseason Miami Japan Long Beach
Nazareth Brazil Gateway Milwaukee
Detroit Portland Cleveland Toronto
U.S. 500 Mid-Ohio Road America Vancouver
Laguna Seca Houston Surfer's Paradise Fontana

1997 Thoughts
Miami Surfer's Paradise Long Beach Nazareth
Brazil Gateway Milwaukee Detroit
Portland Cleveland Toronto
U.S. 500 Mid-Ohio Road America
Vancouver Laguna Seca Fontana
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