Qualifying: Wash-out, Brack on pole

For the second time this season, Champ Car qualifying was rained out at an oval venue. Kenny Brack of Team Rahal was awarded pole position, based on the results of the Saturday morning practice session at Michigan International Speedway, though he will not receive the championship point that normally accompanies a Champ Car pole

Qualifying: Wash-out, Brack on pole

"We had our bases covered either way ­ we would have won the pole on championship points or practice speeds," commented series leader Brack, who topped 229 mph in the morning practice session. "I think we had a verystrong possibility for the pole. It would have been interesting, but I think we had a very good shot."

Behind the Team Rahal cars of Brack and Max Papis on the front row, the grid takes an interesting turn with Tora Takagi in third, based on his 227.9-mph lap on Saturday morning.

"This track is easy for me," Takagi remarked. "All the corners are nearly flat.

"I have no idea what to expect for the race," added the Japanese rookie. "It's just like a video. I hope to finish the race."

Takagi's presence at the front of the field could pose a challenge for those behind him. He was placed on probation by CART Chief Steward Chris Kneifel after last week's race at Toronto for unsportsmanlike driving, though he hasn't put a wheel wrong in two days at Michigan.

"I want to congratulate Tora. I was watching him the last two days and he's done a great job," Papis noted. "But the race is definitely going to be a different game. Everyone is going to be very close. We'll have to keep the brain switched on, otherwise it will be a problem. It will be very important to stay sharp at all times."

"You don't want to lead every lap," Brack added. "It's good to lead a lot, because you get the extra championship point. You also want to save fuel, but you don't want to get into the back of the field and get involved in an accident. Last year we were running strong and we decided to do that, and it wasn't very smart, because that was exactly what happened."

The drivers hurt most by Saturday's rain were Michael Andretti (18th), Helio Castroneves (19th) and Dario Franchitti (25th).

"This place is all about luck, about getting a tow in practice, which can really affect the practice times. And now it has affected the qualifying grid," said Andretti.

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Brack still on top in Saturday practice

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