Paul Tracy has finished sixth or better in all four FedEx Championship Series events this season, including a victory at Long Beach and podium finishes of third at Homestead and Rio de Janeiro. He holds a 56-42 lead over Jimmy Vasser and Roberto Moreno in the championship and joins Moreno as the only drivers to complete every lap (541) and mile (899.337) of competition to date.
Roberto Moreno, like Tracy, is the only other driver to have scored in every event this season. He owns podium finishes of second at Homestead and third at Japan, in addition to efforts of ninth at Long Beach and sixth at Rio de Janeiro. He has scored points in six of his last seven starts, dating to last year's ninth-place result at Chicago.
Defending FedEx Championship Series champion Juan Montoya owns a string of six consecutive top-three qualifying performances and eight in the past 10 events, dating to last year’s pole at Vancouver. Also included are poles at Houston last year and Nazareth and Japan this year.
Cristiano da Matta has finished fourth in each of his past two FedEx Championship Series starts (Rio de Janeiro, Japan), matching a career best established at Nazareth last year. The efforts have moved him into a tie with Max Papis for fifth in the championship, with 25 points.
On the right track:
Michael Andretti owns eight top-five finishes in 12 career starts at his "home" track – Nazareth Speedway -- including victories in 1987 and 1996. He also recorded runner-up finishes in 1988, 1992 and 1997, finished third in 1991 and claimed the pole position in 1987 and 1992. He has scored points in 10 of 12 career starts and has led 646 career laps at Nazareth, more than 10 percent of his CART-leading career total of 6,160.
Team KOOL Green driver Paul Tracy owns five podium finishes in nine career starts at Nazareth, including victories in 1994 and 1997. He also finished third in 1992, 1993 and last year. He is a two-time polesitter (1996, 1997) and has finished outside the top 10 only once (26th in 1995). Of his 2,335 career laps led in FedEx Championship Series competition, 536 -- 23 percent -- have come at Nazareth.
Juan Montoya has already made an impact in his two career appearances at Nazareth Speedway, winning from the pole last year while leading 210 of 225 laps, and claiming the pole for this year's weather-delayed Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix Presented by Toyota. His victory at Nazareth last year moved him into the FedEx Championship Series points lead, which he held following 14 of the season's remaining 17 events en route to the FedEx Championship Series championship.
The entry list for the Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix Presented by Toyota includes Player's Forsythe Racing driver Patrick Carpentier, who has missed the past three events after sustaining a slight fracture of the left wrist in accident at his Las Vegas home last month. Carpentier recorded a strong fifth-place finish in his only FedEx Championship Series start in 2000, the season opener at Homestead.
Della Penna Motorsports rookie driver Norberto Fontana has been cleared to drive by Dr. Steve Olvey, CART Director of Medical Affairs, pending a test arranged by the Della Penna Motorsports team. Olvey said that the purpose of the test will be to ensure that Fontana will be comfortable in the car under racing conditions. Fontana briefly lost consciousness after an accident during practice for the May 14 Firestone Firehawk 500 at Twin Ring Motegi, Japan. The date and site of Fontana's test has not been disclosed.
Walker Racing driver Shinji Nakano (Avex Honda Reynard) will not compete in the Bosch Spark Plug Grand Prix Presented by Toyota, in the aftermath of his recovery from several small brain bruises sustained in a March 31 testing accident at The Milwaukee Mile. Nakano returned to competition without incident in the May 14 Firestone Firehawk 500 at Motegi, Japan, but team owner Derrick Walker said that the compressed time schedule of the rescheduled Nazareth event made mounting a competitive effort impossible. "When the Nazareth race was postponed, there was a chance we would be able to test there after Shinji had recovered," Walker said. "Unfortunately, the rules don't allow us to test at that racetrack before the rescheduled race, and Shinji hadn't been cleared to drive in the timeframe we had."