Best finish since '97 spurs Gugelmin

PacWest's Mauricio Gugelmin finished second in the Bosch Spark Plugs Grand Prix at Nazareth on Saturday. Astonishingly, this was the best result for the highly rated driver since his win at Vancouver in 1997. It was the best result for the team since Mark Blundell's win at Fontana that year

Best finish since '97 spurs Gugelmin

The result was something of a boost for the team, who had seen Blundell crash heavily on lap 167.

"It is important for us to go on from here and for everyone to realise that we can win races," said Gugelmin. "I think we have been unlucky a couple of times this year, but we need to use this as the turning point."

After more than two years in the wilderness in terms of results, PacWest badly need the turning point. With the potential, on paper at least, to win races and championships, PacWest and Gugelmin need to demonstrate that this result is no flash in the pan.

The Brazilian described the strategy that took him from 12th to second.

"We made tremendous mileage early in the race and had a little in reserve at the end when it counted.

"This was only a one day event so there were not the Friday and Saturday sessions to put the normal amount of rubber down and you had to be careful. The smart ones made it to the end."

The worst-hit by the lack of grip was Green's Dario Franchitti, who spun off on the warm up lap.

However, Gugelmin kept his head and came through to stand on the podium.

"This is a great result for everyone in the PacWest team who has worked so hard for so long," he said.

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