1999 Firestone Firehawk 500K

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Japan   1998 Firestone Firehawk 500K
Race details
Race 2 of 20 in the 1998 CART season
Twin Ring Motegi
Twin Ring Motegi
Date March 28, 1998
Official name 1999 Firestone Firehawk 500K
Location Twin Ring Motegi, Motegi, Tochigi, Japan
Course Permanent oval course
1.549 mi / 2.493 km
Distance 201 laps, 311.349 mi / 501.093 km
Weather Dry
Pole position
Driver Brazil Gil de Ferran Walker Racing
Time 25.463
Fastest lap
Driver Brazil Hélio Castro-Neves Hogan Racing
Time 25.830 (on lap 136 of 201)
Podium
First Mexico Adrián Fernández Patrick Racing
Second Brazil Gil de Ferran Walker Racing
Third Brazil Christian Fittipaldi Newman-Haas Racing

The 1999 Firestone Firehawk 500K was the second round of the 1999 CART FedEx Champ Car World Series season, held on April 9, 1999 on the Twin Ring Motegi in Motegi, Tochigi, Japan.

Report[edit]

Race[edit]

There was drama at the start when polesitter Gil de Ferran spun while taking the green flag. As a result, the start was delayed, and de Ferran was able to take back his starting position: pole. He led the early stages but then began to drop back with tyre problems and Maurício Gugelmin took the lead. Gugelmin led comfortably until the first round of stops, when he overshot his pitlane, losing time. He was also given a black flag for running over pit material, which put him a lap down and out of contention. Adrián Fernández took the lead and led comfortably until Juan Pablo Montoya closed right up to him. Fernández held him off, and Montoya's challenge was ended when he lost three laps due to a fuel pick-up problem. In the final stages of the race, it seemed clear that everyone had to pit for fuel, and a caution brought out by Max Papis's spin was ideal. All the leaders pitted, except Fernández who for some reason stayed out. It seemed to be a mistake, as the race went green with 4 laps left, and he did not have enough fuel for 4 green-flag laps. However, Greg Moore, running second, spun while lapping backmarkers, which resulted in Richie Hearn crashing, and the caution came out again. Whereas the spin dropped Moore to fourth, the caution was till the end of the race, which meant that Fernández did not have to stop, and thus won the race. de Ferran recovered to finish second, and Christian Fittipaldi completed the podium.

Classification[edit]

Race[edit]

Pos No Driver Team Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 40 Mexico Adrián Fernández Patrick Racing 201 1:46:01.463 4 20+1
2 5 Brazil Gil de Ferran Walker Racing 201 +6.347 1 16+1
3 11 Brazil Christian Fittipaldi Newman-Haas Racing 201 +7.669 7 14
4 99 Canada Greg Moore Forsythe Racing 201 +38.027 6 12
5 6 United States Michael Andretti Newman-Haas Racing 200 +1 Lap 5 10
6 44 Brazil Tony Kanaan Forsythe Racing 200 +1 Lap 17 8
7 17 Brazil Maurício Gugelmin PacWest Racing 200 +1 Lap 2 6
8 22 United States Robby Gordon Team Gordon 200 +1 Lap 14 5
9 9 Brazil Hélio Castro-Neves Hogan Racing 199 +2 Laps 18 4
10 10 United States Richie Hearn Della Penna Motorsports 198 Contact 21 3
11 26 Canada Paul Tracy Team KOOL Green 198 +3 Laps 10 2
12 12 United States Jimmy Vasser Chip Ganassi Racing 198 +3 Laps 12 1
13 4 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya Chip Ganassi Racing 197 +4 Laps 15
14 2 Brazil Tarso Marques Marlboro Team Penske 197 +4 Laps 22
15 20 United States P. J. Jones Patrick Racing 196 +5 Laps 9
16 7 Italy Max Papis Team Rahal 196 +5 Laps 3
17 36 United States Alex Barron All American Racing 195 +6 Laps 19
18 19 Mexico Michel Jourdain, Jr. Payton/Coyne Racing 188 +13 Laps 26
19 71 Brazil Luiz Garcia, Jr. Payton/Coyne Racing 184 Engine 25
20 16 Japan Shigeaki Hattori Bettenhausen Racing 140 Clutch 24
21 24 United States Scott Pruett Arciero-Wells Racing 106 Fire 20
22 27 United Kingdom Dario Franchitti Team KOOL Green 91 Contact 11
23 8 United States Bryan Herta Team Rahal 84 Electrical 8
24 18 United Kingdom Mark Blundell PacWest Racing 78 Handling 16
25 25 Brazil Cristiano da Matta Arciero-Wells Racing 39 Transmission 23
26 33 Canada Patrick Carpentier Forsythe Racing 10 Fuel pressure 13

Caution flags[edit]

Laps Cause
1-3 de Ferran (5) spin
88-95 Franchitti (27) contact
139-147 Debris on track
193-197 Papis (7) spin
199-201 Moore (99) spin

Lap Leaders[edit]

Laps Leader
1 Maurício Gugelmin
2-26 Gil de Ferran
27-46 Maurício Gugelmin
47-50 Adrián Fernández
51-52 Scott Pruett
53-201 Adrián Fernández
 
Driver Laps led
Adrián Fernández 153
Gil de Ferran 25
Maurício Gugelmin 21
Scott Pruett 2

Point standings after race[edit]

Pos Driver Points
1 Canada Greg Moore 34
2 United States Michael Andretti 26
3 Brazil Gil de Ferran 25
4 Mexico Adrián Fernández 21
5 Brazil Christian Fittipaldi 18

References[edit]