Behind the Barriers: Kentucky

Tony Kanaan ended speculation regarding his future employ when he announced that he will stay at Andretti Green Racing through 2013. Kanaan, the 2004 IndyCar Series champion, has been with Andretti Green Racing since its inception in 2003....

Tony Kanaan ended speculation regarding his future employ when he announced that he will stay at Andretti Green Racing through 2013. Kanaan, the 2004 IndyCar Series champion, has been with Andretti Green Racing since its inception in 2003. "We're really excited to get this done," said team co-owner Michael Andretti. "We felt like we had a deal a long time ago with Tony with a handshake." Andretti noted that it was nice to be able to put an end to all the rumors.

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Michael Andretti will be inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America on August 13 in Detroit. He will be presented with the honor by his father Mario. In addition to Andretti, the class of 2008 includes Buddy Baker, Richie Ginther, John Force, Wayne Rainey, Betty Skelton and Paul Goldsmith.

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With the new four-lap qualifying format this year, Scott Dixon set a new track record in qualifying with an average speed of 218.968 mph over the four laps. Sarah Fisher still holds the track record for a single lap when she qualified on the pole in 2002 with a speed of 221.390 mph. Fisher qualified 16th today (216.557 mph).

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Dan Wheldon's Target Ganassi ride is sporting new colors this weekend. Wheldon's black No. 10 is adorned with sponsorship from Poloroid. The Poloroid car made its debut at Texas in June but was ultimately replaced by the traditional red Target car when a crash in practice, took Wheldon on a wild, inverted ride through the TMS infield.

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Enrique Bernoldi's Conquest mount was delivered to the pits via tow truck after coming to a halt on the track during Friday's first practice session. The car was suspended from the tow truck's crane when the strap holding the car broke, dropping it about five feet.

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Hideki Mutoh attended Thursday's night Houston Astros-Cincinatti Reds game at Great America Park as a guest of Astro's second baseman Kaz Matsui. A native of Osaka, Japan, Matsui was at Kentucky Speedway earlier in the day for a two-seater ride.

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Arie Luyendyk Jr. is nursing his left knee after a July 27 surgery to remove an infected bursa sac. Cleared to drive, Luyendyk has been taking it easy, spending part of the day resting with an ice pack on his leg. "I worked really hard in rehab in the last week so I could be in the car this weekend," said Luyendyk. After setting the fastest lap in practice, Luyendyk qualified third.

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All 66,089 seats for the Meijer Indy 300 have been sold. The track will place 2,000 standing room only tickets on sale at 1:00 p.m. Saturday.

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Series INDYCAR , INDYLIGHTS