Montoya 'Targetting' title charge

Juan Montoya believes he is back in contention for this year's CART title going into this weekend's Target Grand Prix of Chicago, the biggest race of the year for his Target Chip Ganassi Racing team

Montoya 'Targetting' title charge

Montoya's hard-fought victory in last weekend's Michigan 500 leapt him up to fifth place in the standings, albeit still 30 points behind series leader Michael Andretti.

"The timing for that win was perfect," he enthused. "We had a few difficult races in a row, so that big win was great for our confidence. This is an important time of year for our team. Chicago is our last oval for a while so it's important for us to get some good points here and continue to gain on the leaders."

Team boss and circuit owner Chip Ganassi was also quietly confident.

"This is the time of year when our experience and teamwork begins to pay off," he said. "I like our team's focus. They all know their goals and are doing everything in their power to achieve them."

Reigning champion Montoya has been fast all year, leading three times more laps than anyone else in the 11 races held to date in 2000, but has not enjoyed the good fortune of his title-winning season. His victories at Milwaukee and Michigan are the only podium finishes Montoya has managed this year.

His team-mate Jimmy Vasser's strong early-season form suggested that he might also be a contender for the title, but a series of retirements has dropped the American to ninth in the points. However, he still thinks he is in with a chance.

"There are too many races left to get discouraged," Vasser said. "We have to score points in the remaining nine races in order to give us a shot at the title and there's not one person on this team who thinks we can't do it."

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