Pagenaud could take $2M to Team Australia

Frenchman Simon Pagenaud is leading the Champ Car Atlantic championship with one race left to run, this weekend at Road America. He holds a 12-point lead over Graham Rahal, and does not have to win the race to win the $2 million prize that goes toward a Champ Car ride in 2007. If he wins it, who will Pagenaud drive for in 2007? Clearly he had not thought it through at this stage.

Q. Simon, in your situation, I've heard from Derrick Walker that he has an interest in retaining you next year. Perhaps if he got his wish, he'd have you in a Champ Car. Do you think you might have a test with any of the Champ Car teams? Will it depend on whether you are actually able to get the championship coming up at Elkhart?

SIMON PAGENAUD: "First of all, I think I may have a test day with Walker Racing at the end of the year because it was something we planned together. I may have a test like this. Then we will see. It's up to the championship if I take it. I don't know where the money ($2M) is going to be spent, by who, how it's going to work. I can't say a word on that because I don't know anything about it.

"Actually I would say for sure if Team Australia can propose me a very good program, I'd like to stay with them. But I can't say anything because I don't know anything about that.

"I came in USA to win this $2 million and the championship. It's going pretty well actually. My goal when I came here at the beginning of 2006 was to go in Champ Car. I'm just going to try to go forward, just try to take this prize and go in Champ Car. I don't know which team. I'll see talking with some people and then we'll see what happen. It's just a matter of money. If it happens, that's great for me. That's really good.

"I just want to see how it can go for the next year, try to have contract signed as quickly as I can."

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