Byline: From Our Press Services
Greg Moore figures maturity is the most important factor for a young driver with championship aspirations.
And a big part of the process is accepting defeat.
"I have to be more mature and not get so upset about finishing second or third sometimes," said Moore, who had no such worries last Sunday when he won the first CART race of the season.
Accepting defeat is something Moore says Alex Zanardi did very well while winning the PPG Cup championship the last two seasons before moving back to Formula One.
"I learned from Zanardi that you have to use your head," Moore said. "Alex always drives very, very aggressively, but there were times he accepted that he was going to finish fifth or third, and took the points and went on."
THAT HURTS: Eliseo Salazar is back in the cockpit, and no one is more surprised about that than the veteran driver from Chile.
Salazar crashed after a suspension failure in his car during the Indy Racing League event last June in Dover, Del. It was a nasty hit, with Salazar sustaining multiple fractures.
The driver, who has recuperated from several other serious incidents in recent years, said, "No more!"
"At first, I did think no," the 43-year-old Salazar said. "The pain was overwhelming. I can now really understand when people say they can't live with the pain and would prefer to die.''
Once he left the hospital, Salazar went home to Chile. He did not intend to return. But then the mail came.
"The people of Chile . . . they write that I can overcome this; that I can get back and win again; that I have been an inspiration for their children," he said. "Then I began to heal and see some races on television and I think, `Maybe.' ''
With little seat time, he failed to qualify for the opener in Orlando in January. But Salazar expects to be racing today in the MCI WorldCom 200 at Phoenix International Raceway
Salazar, a longtime sports car endurance star, has one IRL vic-tory in 13 starts.
BAD START: Alex Zanardi's return to Formula One served as a reminder that even the mighty are humbled at times, and must not lose site of the future.
Zanardi, the two-time CART champion and winner of 15 Champ Car races, crashed his Williams-Supertec after just 21 laps earlier this month in the Australian Grand Prix.
"I don't really know what happened," Zanardi said. "I just turned into a corner and lost the back.
"All I can do is gather my thoughts in preparation for the next race."
That will be April 11 in Brazil.
Zanardi says there at times he must accept that he cannot carry a car.
"You have got to have good support from the machine you are driving," he said.