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2002 Portland Thoughts

TRACK: Is there really still a need for the Festival Curves?

RACE: Sufficient action. Especially after Laguna Seca.

START: In most sports, when a competitor shows up the officials, they get thrown out. The first lap, Brack proved his point. Afterwards, he should have been black flagged, instead of being allowed to do it two more times.

DA MATTA: Rapidly becoming the Zanardi or Montoya of 2002.

JUNQUEIRA: It it's not one Target car, it's another. Or, another. This time, it was Bruno who did a fine job upholding the Target honor.

BRACK: Kenny may have taken the setback in stride (at least in public), but you can be sure Chip will not be happy.

FRANCHITTI: An uneventful third place.

ANDRETTI: An eventful ninth place.

BELL: Now, his talent is showing. The stall wasn't entirely his fault, and a podium finish is just around the corner.

JOURDAIN: Solidly in the points again. Michel has completed more laps than anyone else, just three short of the maximum possible.

TRACY: This time, it definitely was not Paul's fault.

FITTIPALDI: Once again, someone gets right up alongside Christian, he turns into them, and in predictable fashion, blames the other driver. Come on, Christian, use your mirrors, and own up to your own screw ups.

FERNANDEZ: What the...

TAKAGI: Tora looked very strong and quick during practice and qualifying. Has much promise heading into the race as he turns the second fastest lap in Sunday's warm up. Then, at the start, he drives off the track, plows back on as if he expects a hole to open up. Boom. Bang. Crunch. Finally, a few laps later, he plows it into a tire wall. In other words, a typical Tora weekend.

SIGMA: Not good. Not good at all.

COSWORTH: There's good and bad with the turbo spec engine announcement. The good is that it prevents an engine/chassis combo that was never going to work. It also has CART admitting that the IRL wants nothing to do with reconciliation, so it is time to move on. Therefore, it buys time to regroup for a more amicable solution. And of course, the fans get to have their beloved turbos back. However, there is some bad. No, it is not really the fact that it is now a spec engine series -- the IRL fans can go play with themselves over that irony for all we care. It has to do with the fact that the immense amount of money spent by the likes of Toyota and Honda in helping to promote the series and fund teams, will now be gone to the IRL. Don't underestimate the impact of that.

MG: The fact that MG -- and Judd -- isn't screaming bloody murder (at least not yet) over the engine decision by CART, probably means that some private deal was arranged. If so, kudos to Chris Pook, who knows how to do things right. Unlike Jargon Joe.

BRAZILIANS: Here's a question for the IRL faithful. Perhaps just to AJ Foyt himself, who has railed on "Brazilianaires" as one of his favorite anti-CART topics. Just what is the difference between a one-two Brazilian finish at Portland and a one-two Brazilian finish at Pikes Peak? Really. Just what is the difference?

CBS: Thank goodness CART abandoned ABC. Or, was it the other way around? Who cares. In either case, CART has rid itself of a network that has absolutely no concern for auto racing. ABC proved it again on Sunday. Despite the fact that they are paying $10 million to the IRL to cover their series, they allowed a tape delayed (which means they could have cut portions out) soccer match (yes, it is the World Cup, which probably meant everybody already knew the score) that was a time buy (Major League Soccer actually owns the US broadcast rights to the World Cup, and they are buying time on ABC/ESPN/ESPN2) to cut well into the IRL race at Pikes Peak. Then, when the race was rain delayed, they dumped it for the news. And, they didn't even bother moving it over to one of their sister stations. It almost makes you feel sorry for the IRL. Almost.

STAT OF THE WEEKEND: An estimated $1.1 million to $1.3 million for the yearly Cosworth engine lease for 2003, per car. $1.5 million for the Entrant Support Program for 2003, per car. You do the math.

HISTORICAL STAT OF THE WEEKEND: The Pacific Northwest is known for its rain, so it should be no surprise that the first rain race in USAC's history occurred at the Kent, Washington 2.2-mile road course in 1969. Run in two heats, it rained during the second one, won by Al Unser, Sr. Mario Andretti won the first heat.

QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND: In the, gee, is anyone really surprised category, comes this quote from David Cripps, team manager for IRL entrant Bradley Motorsports, over the direction of the IRL, "...it's very difficult to survive when the bigger teams are beating you into submission. The IRL is being transformed from a cute, warm and fuzzy spec series into a ruthless, cut-throat business driven by the engine manufacturers."

QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND RUNNERUP: Not from anyone's mouth, but from a T-shirt worn by rideless Oriol Servia which read, "Bored."

SCHEDULE: Chicago is supposed to be a very important market for CART. We'll see how important CART is to Chicago when we take a look at the stands come race day.

Copyright 2002 by Deep Throttle. All Rights Reserved.


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RACE RESULTS
  Driver Laps
1. da Matta 110
2. Junqueira 110
3. Franchitti 110
4. Bell(R) 110
5. Carpentier 110
6. Jourdain 110
7. Dixon 110
8. Kanaan 110
9. Andretti 110
10. Dominguez(R) 109
11. Nakano 109
12. Tagliani 109
13. Fittipaldi 93
14. Fernandez 86
15. Brack 60
16. Vasser 48
17. Tracy 33
18. Takagi 12

Time of Race
2:03:19.113

Winner's Speed
105.381 mph

Margin of Victory
0.625 sec.

Caution Flags
3 for 8 laps

Lead Changes
4 among 2 drivers

Most Laps Led
Cristiano da Matta

Pole Position
Cristiano da Matta

Provisional Pole
Cristiano da Matta

CURRENT STANDINGS
  Driver Pts.
1. da Matta 74
2. Junqueira 54
  Jourdian 54
4. Franchitti 49
5. Fittipaldi 43
6. Carpentier 38
7. Andretti 34
  Dixon 34
9. Tracy 32
  Papis 32
  Brack 32
12. Tagliani 30
13. Fernandez 28
14. Vasser 26
15. Bell(R) 18
16. Takagi 13
  Servia 13
18. Kanaan 7
19. Nakano 6
20. Dominguez(R) 5
 
 
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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