Qualifying 1: Junqueira sets pace

Bruno Junqueira hasn't often had things go his way during the first day of Champ Car race weekends in 2003. That all changed at Toronto's Exhibition Place street circuit today (Friday), as the Brazilian authoritatively grabbed the overnight pole

Qualifying 1: Junqueira sets pace

The Newman/Haas team was content to hold Junqueira in the pits until the end of the 40-minute qualifying session. Bruno had been fastest on his first set of tyres with a 60.823s lap early in the session, but by the time he went out for his second run with seven minutes to go, he had fallen to eighth place.

With hometown hero Paul Tracy's 59.803s lap the mark to beat, Bruno did it with apparent ease. He warmed up with a 59.950s to move up to second before dropping a 59.486s the next time around. With Tracy and the rest of the field out of laps, the pole - and more importantly, a guaranteed front-row starting spot for Sunday's 112-lap race - was Junqueira's.

"I'm happy, because nobody knew what to expect after the practice sessions were in the wet," Junqueira said. "I like it when you don't have much practice because it brings the best out in the drivers. I like the feeling of having to go as fast as you can with the car that you've got.

"The team made the decision to wait until the end. I started to get worried when I was losing positions, but I was lucky - it was one of the only times this year that I didn't get traffic."

Tracy had an eventful session. Eleven minutes in, he took over the top spot with a 60.079s lap. But two laps later, Tracy spun and stalled at Turn 10, and his penalty for the resultant red flag was the loss of his best lap to that point. He later responded with a 59.803s but it wasn't enough to hold off Junqueira.

"I was pretty much done with fourteen minutes to go," reported the championship leader. "My lap gave a lot of guys a number to shoot for and Bruno finally beat it in the last minute. We prayed for rain, but it never came."

Michel Jourdain Jr almost cracked into the 59s with a 60.002s, while Oriol Servia managed a 60.009s. Canadians Alex Tagliani and Patrick Carpentier ran fifth and seventh, sandwiching Portland winner Adrian Fernandez.

Briton Darren Manning won the sub-race to take top Reynard honours. He was eighth fastest with a best lap of 60.586s.

shares
comments
Tobacco laws force Player's out
Previous article

Tobacco laws force Player's out

Next article

Qualifying 2: Tracy storms to pole

Qualifying 2: Tracy storms to pole
Why romanticism isn't the key factor in Lola’s racing return Plus

Why romanticism isn't the key factor in Lola’s racing return

The iconic Lola name is being relaunched after it was taken over by new ownership. Part of that reboot is a planned return to racing, though the exact details of this are still to be finalised - though its new owner does have a desire to bring the brand back to the Le Mans 24 Hours. But romanticism doesn't appear to be the driving force behind this renewed project...

General
Jul 14, 2022
Rating the best drivers of the century so far Plus

Rating the best drivers of the century so far

Autosport's Top 50 feature has been a staple of the magazine for the past two decades since its first appearance in 2002. Here are the drivers that have featured most prevalently during that time

General
Jan 7, 2022
The best motorsport moments of 2021 Plus

The best motorsport moments of 2021

Motorsport produced one of its greatest years of all-time in 2021 despite a backdrop of ongoing COVID-19 challenges and an ever-changing racing landscape. Through the non-stop action Autosport has collected the finest moments from the past 12 months to highlight the incredible drama and joy motorsport generates

General
Dec 31, 2021
The racing comeback artists who resurrected long-dormant careers Plus

The racing comeback artists who resurrected long-dormant careers

Making it in motorsport can be tough, and sometimes drivers move elsewhere before their best chance arrives. Here are some of those who made it back

General
Dec 26, 2021
The hidden racing gem attracting ex-F1 heroes Plus

The hidden racing gem attracting ex-F1 heroes

It’s rarely mentioned when it comes to assessing the best national contests, but the Brazilian Stock Car series that reaches its climax this weekend has an ever-growing appeal. Its expanding roster of ex-Formula 1 names has helped to draw in new fans, but it's the closeness of competition that keeps them watching

General
Dec 10, 2021
The one-time Schumacher rival rebooting his career Down Under Plus

The one-time Schumacher rival rebooting his career Down Under

Joey Mawson made waves in the middle of the last decade, beating future Haas Formula 1 driver Mick Schumacher - among other highly-rated talents - to the 2016 German F4 title. A run in F1's feeder GP3 category only caused his career to stall, but now back in Australia Mawson's S5000 title success has set that to rights

General
May 8, 2021
The lesson football’s would-be wreckers could learn from racing Plus

The lesson football’s would-be wreckers could learn from racing

OPINION: The greed-driven push for a European Super League that threatened to tear football apart is collapsing at the seams. Motor racing's equivalent, the football-themed Superleague Formula series of 2008-11, was everything that the proposed ESL never could be

General
Apr 21, 2021
The F1 and Indy 'nearly man' that found contentment in Japan Plus

The F1 and Indy 'nearly man' that found contentment in Japan

Having had the door to F1 slammed in his face and come within three laps of winning the Indianapolis 500, the collapse of a Peugeot LMP1 shot meant Japan was Bertrand Baguette's last chance of a career. But it's one which he has grasped with both hands

General
Feb 27, 2021