IMS Drivers Make Super Bowl XLI Predictions
INDIANAPOLIS, Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2007 -- Predictions and comments about Super Bowl XLI between the Indianapolis Colts and Chicago Bears from drivers who have competed recently at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway:
SARAH FISHER (IndyCar Series, five-time Indianapolis 500 starter): "I'm a huge Colts fan! I've attended Peyton Manning's Peyback Celebrity Bowling tournament several times, including this past fall, and attended a number of other Colts' charity events. The Colts' organization has been a longtime supporter of the Indy 500 and our series, and I share that same support for their organization. We even have a horseshoe on our Dreyer & Reinbold Racing motor coach down here in Daytona (where IndyCar Series is testing). Go Colts!"
JEFF GORDON (NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series, four-time Allstate 400 at the Brickyard winner): "Colts by 10. Having grown up there a number of years ago, it's good to see them back in the Super Bowl."
SAM HORNISH JR. (IndyCar Series, 2006 Indianapolis 500 winner): "Since I have always lived equidistant from Indianapolis and Chicago, I grew up following both teams to some extent. However, since meeting Peyton (Manning) and Tony (Dungy) at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway a couple of years ago, we've kept in touch, so now I consider myself a die-hard Colts fan. Peyton and I help each other out with our respective charity efforts. Despite my busy schedule over the past couple of months, I have been lucky enough to attend a couple of games this season and think that they have what it takes to win in Miami. I ran into Peyton on New Year's Eve in Indianapolis after the Miami game and was able to wish him luck. Hopefully his luck will continue this weekend."
JIMMIE JOHNSON (NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series, 2006 Allstate 400 at the Brickyard winner): "I've followed Peyton's (Manning) career for quite awhile. I know how it feels to be so close so many times and come up short. He has always seemed so classy even when he was disappointed. I hope this is the year that he finally is able to do it. He is a great player, and he deserves to win a championship. It's an incredible feeling to win your sports highest title. I hope Peyton gets the ring. Colts 31, Bears 24."
DANICA PATRICK (IndyCar Series, 2005 Indianapolis 500 Chase Rookie of the Year): "Bears 31, Colts 27. I think this game is going to have a little bit of everything. I think both teams will start out slow, probably just a couple of field goals in the early part of the game. But then I think it will be wide open in the second half. Even though I'm predicting a Bears' win, I don't think I can lose. I'm from Illinois, so I've always been kind of a Bears' fan. But, my husband (Paul) and I met Peyton Manning at the ESPY's last year and had a chance to talk to him for a while, so I would love to see him get a win, too."
BUDDY RICE (IndyCar Series, 2004 Indianapolis 500 winner): "I think as long as the Super Bowl is a good game, that is all that matters. I just don't want it to be like the Florida Gators-Ohio State game."
SCOTT SPEED (Formula One, 2006 United States Grand Prix starter, only American driver in F1): "Colts by three. Why the Colts? Because I've been to Indy and never have been to Chicago. I plan to host the USA Super Bowl party in the Austrian village Fuschl am See, where my brother Alex and I live at the moment. Alex will be there to help gather the party people!"