Servia Shakes Off Bridesmaid Tag

Oriol Servia lifted a singularly tenacious monkey from his back in Montreal on Sunday, scoring his maiden Champ Car victory at the 95th time of asking

Servia Shakes Off Bridesmaid Tag

In fact, Servia's win was his first in any kind of motor race since a French Formula Three race at Albi in 1997 - even his triumphant Indy Lights campaign in 1999 was winless despite a trio of pole positions.

Since taking over the #2 Newman/Haas Lola in relief of the injured Bruno Junqueira at Milwaukee, Servia had racked up a string of podium finishes and came agonisingly close to victory at Toronto in July.

The 31-year-old Catalonian admitted it was a relief to shake off the bridesmaid tag at last.

"It feels awesome," he said. "I'm not going to mention how many times I thought I deserved the win, blah, blah, blah, because the list is so long. But it happened today.

"It happened because of Bruno's accident, which is something none of us wanted. But, you know, I was really happy they decided I was the one to go in the car. I know Bruno was really happy they chose me.

"Since day one the team has shown great, great support for me - all the guys in the crew, the owners, and [sponsor] PacifiCare. It just feels extremely good to be able to show them that they made the right choice trusting me.

"We were getting closer and closer, and I knew it was going to happen eventually. I'm just really glad it happened so I don't have to answer the question, 'When is going to be the first one?' ever again!

"I hope [it will be] the first of many."

Servia sealed the win with some combative wheel-to-wheel racing with rookie Timo Glock in the closing laps - as well as a little help from the officials, who deemed that Glock had kept him at bay only by straight-lining the final chicane and ordered the German to cede the lead on the last lap.

Race director Tony Cotman explained: "Car #2 [Servia] had tried passing car #8 [Glock] six laps prior to the incident in Turn 15. Car #8 short-cut the course to maintain the lead and his team was warned.

"In the second incident, car #2 was alongside, if not in front, when car #8 short-cut the course to maintain the lead again. As the team had been warned, positions were reversed.

"It was a quick judgement that was made concerning the two drivers who were looking for their first wins. It was a difficult decision, but it was the correct one."

Servia said he was in no mood to settle for second place and would have attempted a last-ditch passing move had there been no intervention by Race Control.

"I'm glad the officials did the right thing - if not I can tell you that last lap in the hairpin was going to be ugly! I'm sure [third-placed] Justin [Wilson] was waiting for that," quipped Servia.

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Maiden Win for Servia in Montreal
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