Indy 500: AJ Foyt Racing month of May preview

Darren Manning: ABC Supply No. 14 Dallara/Honda/Firestone * Darren Manning on Indy 500 Qualifying: "The unification of the two series means that there are now 25 strong cars competing for those top 11 positions on Pole Day. The new...

Darren Manning: ABC Supply No. 14 Dallara/Honda/Firestone

* Darren Manning on Indy 500 Qualifying: "The unification of the two series means that there are now 25 strong cars competing for those top 11 positions on Pole Day. The new teams have been waiting for Indy because the extra practice time before qualifying (25 hours vs. the normal 2 hours at other races) will help them dial in their cars, so we will be focusing our attention on qualifying even more so than usual. Having said that, we'll also benefit from that extra track time. Last year we barely missed the top 11 with the ABC car, so the next day I ran more conservatively just to get it in the show which we did comfortably. That won't be the case this year-we'll definitely be striving to get the car in on the first day which would be good because I don't want to have to wait around even a day, and certainly not a whole week."

* Manning on the pressure of running for Foyt at Indy: "Actually it makes it more fun for me because there is so much more interest from A.J. and I revel in that. I don't mind the extra pressure. Not to say that A.J. isn't interested in the other races, but everyone on this team knows what Indy means to A.J."

* Best Qualifying Runs at Indy: Darren Manning's best qualifying run at Indy is 15th (for Ganassi Racing in 2004 and Foyt Racing in 2007). A.J. Foyt Racing's best IRL qualifying effort at Indy came in 1998 when Billy Boat won the pole (223.503 mph) and Kenny Brack started third.

* Kentucky Derby Time: The Foyts along with Darren Manning will once again attend the Kentucky Derby May 1st through the 3rd. A.J. has been going to the Derby since the early 70's. A.J. IV, who was born in Louisville, never went with his parents. His mother Nancy said, "The kids ('Anthony' as his family calls him, and his sisters Tonia and Casie) had 'Derby Parties' with their babysitter while we were at the Derby." His first time at the Derby came in 2002 with his grandfather while A.J.'s son Larry first attended in 2004. Last year was Darren's first Derby (or, as he pronounces it "Darby"), and it was there that he met his girlfriend Lauren Feusner, who will be going with Darren this year.

* Three generations of racing Foyts are represented in the Sports Museum of America's motorsports area of the nearly 50,000 square foot museum. A.J., Larry and A.J. IV each loaned a pair of their driving shoes to be included in the display. The Sports Museum of America is the nation's first multi-media, interactive all-sports museum experience celebrating the significance of sports in American culture. Although A.J. Foyt, a member of the Museum's Board of Trustees, will be in Indianapolis for the first day of practice, dozens of legendary hall of famers and icons from all sports will be on hand for the May 6th Opening Day ceremonies, as well as New York City Mayor Bloomberg, and other dignitaries. The events take place inside and outside the museum, just steps from the Statue of Liberty ferry and World Trade Center Memorial.

* Pole Day Qualifying for the Indy 500 will be shown live Saturday, May 10th from 12 Noon-2:00 p.m. on ESPN2, and live on ABC-TV from 3:00 - 6:00 p.m. The wrap-up will air live from 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. on ESPN2. The 92nd Running of the Indianapolis 500 will be shown live on ABC-TV starting at 12 noon on Sunday, May 25th.

-credit: www.ajfoytracing.com.

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Series INDYCAR