Papis stands in for Fernandez

Italian Max Papis will make his CART comeback this weekend when he stands in for the injured Adrian Fernandez at Mid-Ohio.

Papis stands in for Fernandez

Owner/driver Fernandez has been forced to miss the race as he continues to recover from the pelvic injuries he suffered in a multi-car shunt at the last race in Vancouver. The Mexican is expected to make a full recovery and three-time race-winner Papis, who has been without a ride since the Sigma team folded at the start of July, perfectly fulfilled the criteria of an experienced driver to partner Shinji Nakano in the Fernandez Racing team.

"I have been driving against Max for a long time and have a lot of respect for his ability behind the wheel," said Fernandez. "My partners, Tom [Anderson] and Don [Halliday], and I spoke with our sponsors and we decided Max was the best choice. He has done a very good job this year and I am sure he will do a good job for us at Mid-Ohio. The pledge that we have to make to our sponsors is to put the best driver available in the car, and right now we feel that is Max."

Papis has scored two top five finishes at Mid-Ohio during his seven seasons of CART racing and is glad to be given the opportunity to get back behind the wheel again.

"What has happened with Adrian is an unfortunate situation," said the ex-Formula 1 driver. "At the same time, I am very glad to join Fernandez Racing and to be able to work with everyone there including Don Halliday and the people at Honda, who I never had the opportunity to work with in the past. Mid-Ohio has a great fan base and I am looking forward to going there and bringing home a very strong result."

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