Nobody tops Tracy's day-old time

Updated: July 24, 2004, 11:09 PM ET
Associated Press

Paul Tracy
VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Paul Tracy's day-old lap was good enough to retain pole position after final qualifying for Sunday's Molson Indy Vancouver.

The Toronto driver's top time from Friday -- one minute, 00.87 seconds -- went unchallenged in Saturday's qualifying session.

Tracy's Forsythe Racing teammate Rodolfo Lavin of Mexico posted the fastest time Saturday -- 1:00.98 -- to join Tracy on the front row for the race.

The fastest driver in each qualifying round is guaranteed a front-row grid position.

"I feel great!'' said Lavin after getting a hug and slap on the back from Tracy.

"We struggled (Friday) quite a bit and we didn't do any laps in the first practice. But we worked really, really hard overnight and it just felt great this morning,'' he said. "I'm just really, really happy to starting on the front row for the first time.''

Lavin, currently 15th in the Champ Car World Series standings, joined Forsythe this season after his rookie debut with Walker Racing last year, when he finished 18th in the points.

"I think we are showing what we can do with a good car, with good team,'' he said. "I think this is only just the beginning of good results.''

Tracy and Lavin earn a championship point for their top qualifying performances.

Series leader Sebastien Bourdais of France qualified third with his Friday time of 1:00.974 to anchor the second row Sunday for Newman Haas Racing. Mexico's Mario Dominguez posted a 1:01.68 time Saturday to finish fourth.

Bourdais, dominating in his second year in the series with four victories, including the last three races, said he felt lucky his time held up.

"We could have set a track record if not for the red flags we had,'' he said.

American Memo Gidley finished fifth, then sped away from the track to catch a helicopter ride to Portland, Ore., where he was to race in a Speed World Challenge Touring Car event less than two hours later.

Tracy, the reigning Champ Car titleholder, won Vancouver from the pole last year. He's currently running fourth in the series.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press