Monday, August 9, 1999
error-free for win
Takes over series leadAssociated Press
DETROIT -- There is a little stubborn streak in Dario Franchitti that served the hard-driving Scot very well over the weekend.
On the first day of qualifying for the Tenneco Automotive Grand Prix of Detroit, Franchitti couldn't complete even a single lap in either his primary car or his backup. But he never panicked.
Franchitti was fourth in final qualifying, then carved out his second victory of the season in yesterday's Indy car race over the 2.3-mile temporary road course on Belle Isle.
"My team did a great job this weekend," Franchitti said after beating Team Kool Green teammate Paul Tracy to the finish line. "They didn't get down when things were really up against us. We kept working."
The difference was that the conservative Franchitti drove an error-free race while rookie sensation Juan Montoya was making one mistake after another. As a result, Montoya was forced to play catch up in heavy traffic late in the race.
He ended up in a wreck and out of the competition.
"The strategy today played into our hands," Franchitti said in his rich Scottish brogue.
The win vaulted Franchitti into first place in the CART FedEx Championship standings with 136 points, five ahead of Montoya, who had a 13-point lead going into the race.
Greg Moore was third and Michael Andretti fourth in the chaotic race that saw 23 of the scheduled 75 laps run under the caution flag. Because of the delays, race officials decided to limit the competition to two hours, so only 71 laps were completed.
At the end, just 17 of the 26 cars that started were running.
Franchitti takes over series leadStar-Bulletin staff
Dario Franchitti won yesterday's Tenneco Automotive Grand Prix of Detroit to zoom past rookie sensation Juan Montoya in the "Points to Paradise" chase for starting spots in the Hawaiian Super Prix. Montoya led Franchitti by 13 points entering yesterday's race, but he failed to finish and is now five points behind Franchitti.
The top 12 drivers in the FedEx Championship Series standings will receive automatic slots in the Nov. 13 race at Kalaeloa Airport.
The Top 12 remained the same after yesterday's race, but one driver did make a move toward a berth in the Hawaiian Super Prix. Bryan Herta finished ninth in the race, earning four points and moving from 15th to 13th in the standings, just three points behind Roberto Moreno for the final automatic spot. The top 15:
1. Dario Franchitti -- 136
2. Juan Montoya -- 131
3. Michael Andretti -- 119
4. Paul Tracy -- 106
5. Christian Fittipaldi -- 101
6. Greg Moore -- 95
7. Adrian Fernandez -- 95
8. Gil de Ferran -- 88
9. Max Papis -- 68
10. Tony Kanaan -- 62
11. Jimmy Vasser -- 54
12. Roberto Moreno -- 38
13. Bryan Herta -- 35
14. Patrick Carpentier -- 33
15. PJ Jones -- 31
Hawaiian Super Prix