Fernandez beats allergy for narrow pole

Adrian Fernandez was celebrating after setting the provisional pole time in the first session at Long Beach.

Fernandez beats allergy for narrow pole

If he can hang onto the advantage in second qualifying, it will be the Mexican's second CART career pole and his first on a road course.

'Qualifying was very close,' he said after beating Long Beach specialist Gil de Ferran by just 0.07s. 'I was over-driving a little in the beginning, then I pulled back a little to get some space and was able to do my fast lap.

'I actually slowed a little bit in turn nine because there was a yellow flag and I thought someone might have gone into the wall. When I realised the track was clear I sped up again.
'I was a little more precise in my driving and that made the difference. But I think there is some more speed in the car. We are going to need it tomorrow.'

Fernandez took pole despite spending most of Thursday in bed after suffering an allergic reaction to something he had eaten.

'I stayed in my room all day yesterday, I had red spots all over my body and I was really feeling miserable,' he explained.

'This morning everything was fine, but I went to see the doctor anyway and he said I should be okay. Then after qualifying, the rash came back. The doctors gave me something for it that won't affect my driving and I should be okay.

'My body is aching, but when I get into the race car I forget about everything else.'

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