Pook: No trouble with Tracy

Champ Car President and CEO Chris Pook says that he has no vendetta against championship leader Paul Tracy and that reports in the Canadian media of an altercation between the two last week in the Cleveland pit lane were inaccurate

Pook: No trouble with Tracy

Pook told representatives from the Forsythe team that he was unhappy that Tracy wore shorts to a PR function at Cleveland's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The CART boss approached Tracy following preliminary qualifying the following day at Cleveland last weekend to express his displeasure, and he was later admonished by executives from team sponsor Player's cigarettes about the public nature of his action.

"It's gotten completely blown out of proportion," Pook said Saturday in Toronto. "(Paul) blew up for 30 seconds or a minute and that was it. It was a one-way conversation. The problem is (the media) didn't see it. They speculated, they were fed some information and it got blown into a full-on controversy. They talked about pushing and shoving and all kind of crap, but that's total fiction. It's totally in their imagination."

Tracy, who has emerged as the Champ Car series biggest star, has been shadowed by controversy throughout his 13-year career. That 'bad boy' image was exactly what Player's and Forsythe were looking for when they signed the 34-year old to a multi-year contract.

"Paul is a colourful character, and he's also an extremely good racing driver," Pook noted. "Like a lot of colourful athletes, from time to time they step across the line pertaining to the rules of conduct that are expected of them by their sanctioning body. It's not unlike a wayward kid.

"In the opinion of the CEO, he stepped across the line, so he got admonished," Pook added. "It's beyond me how it got to that magnitude, but maybe people were fanning the flames."

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