Mexican drivers set for Champ Car finale

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Mexican drivers Mario Dominguez and David Martinez hope to add a little excitement to a Champ Car season finale otherwise devoid of suspense.

Updated: February 25, 2007 11:37 IST
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Mexican drivers Mario Dominguez and David Martinez hope to add a little excitement to a Champ Car season finale otherwise devoid of suspense. Frenchman Sebastian Bourdais clinched the series title last month after the only driver who could overtake him - American AJ Allmendinger - hit the wall during the Indy 300 in Surfers Paradise, Australia. Allmendinger, who won five of nine races with the Forsythe Racing team this season, is second in series points but signed a multiyear deal last month to drive in NASCAR. He is being replaced in Sunday's Gran Premio Telmex by Buddy Rice, the 2004 Indianapolis 500 winner. Canadian Paul Tracy, fifth in the standings, also will miss the last race of the Champ Car World Series season after he broke his shoulder in an all-terrain vehicle accident. ''It's a shame, Tracy jumped something and broke his shoulder, AJ now is going to NASCAR,'' Bourdais said. "At least we have some attention for you guys because we have two Mexican drivers in the field and that's a good thing.'' Good form The thousands of fans expected at the Hermanos Rodriguez track will no doubt be pulling for Forsythe Racing's Martinez, making his debut in Champ Car after moving up from the Atlantic Championship, and circuit veteran Dominguez of Rocketsports Racing. "It's an opportunity that I might not get again and I've got to take advantage of it,'' Martinez said. "Champ Car racing is a dream come true for me and to do it in Mexico is the other part of the dream. I don't want to wake up.'' Dominguez, known as "Super Mario'' in Mexico, arrives in his homeland in good form after finishing second in Surfers Paradise. "The race here in Mexico will be exciting because with the championship decided nobody's going to speculate, everyone's going to be pushing to win because everyone remembers who won the last race.'' Dominguez, 31, is fourth in the standings and represents Mexico's strongest hope for the podium. His popularity in Mexico is such that he took time out here to appear in a local soap opera, or telenovela. "Ever since I landed here I haven't stopped working in promotions, photo shoots, I've even done a novela,'' he said. "There's a lot of enthusiasm and I'm going to give it everything I've got to give Mexico a great result.'' Bourdais said he is also looking forward to a good time on Sunday. This year's win was his third-consecutive Champ Car title. Ted Horn is the only other driver in the 97-year history of Champ Car racing to win three championships in a row, from 1946 to 1948. (AP)

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