Paul Tracy recovered from a first lap incident which dropped him to 23rd to score a memorable victory in a drama filled Motorola 220.
The majestic four mile Road America circuit was at its most demanding on Sunday, claiming more than half the CART field in what has to rank as one of the most dramatic races of the year so far.
One man to survive the mechanical carnage was Paul Tracy although at the end of the first lap it would have been a brave man who placed a wager on the fiery Canadian taking his second win of the year.
Starting in seventh, Tracy slowed dramatically as the 25 car field took the green flag for the first of 55 laps and for a short while it looked as though any hope of a good result in the Team KOOL Green Reynard-Honda was gone before the race had even started. However after a frantic scramble in the cockpit, traction was found and Tracy was on his way, albeit dead last.
Tracy's problems meant that he missed a dramatic opening lap which single handedly removed the previously dominant Penske outfit.
It was Forsythe's Alex Tagliani who got the jump on pole sitter Dario Franchitti and fellow front row man Gil De Ferran to take the lead into Turn One. The action continued at the bottom of the hill at Turn Two where Helio Castroneves mis-timed his braking and ran wide into the thankfully spacious gravel trap. The Brazilian was able to extricate himself without much delay although a precautionary pit stop at the end of the lap removed one half of the Marlboro steamroller from the equation.
Roger Penske's face grew even longer half way round the opening tour when De Ferran suddenly slowed, unable to select a gear. Gil toured round to complete the lap although he undid the belts on arrival in the pits. Not a good day for the second placed man in the Championship.
The progress of Tagliani was outstanding and the Canadian rookie eased away from the chasing Franchitti at will in the opening laps. The Scotsman continued the chase with great vigour despite losing up to half a second a lap to his rival.
Adrian Fernandez took advantage of the Penske drama's around him to move into third place although the Mexican had to endure constant pressure from Juan Montoya who had rocketed up from twelfth at the start to fifth at the end of the opening lap. The Colombian swiftly dealt with Michael Andretti at the start of lap two and proceeded to home in on the Tecate machine. However Fernandez proved a tough nut to crack and it wasn't until Montoya's first stop on lap 16 that the Colombian was able to get past.