Andretti Autosport press release
FOUR ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT DRIVERS PRIMED FOR BIG JACKPOT FINISH IN 2011 IZOD INDYCAR SERIES FINALE THIS WEEKEND AT LAS VEGAS
LAS VEGAS (Oct. 12, 2011) - The Andretti Autosport drivers come to Las Vegas this weekend with only a victory celebration on their minds.
Winning the 200-lap IZOD IndyCar Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway is the primary goal for Marco Andretti, Mike Conway, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Danica Patrick when the green flag drops at 12:45 p.m. PDT this Sunday, Oct. 16.
Three of the Andretti Autosport drivers have already visited victory lane in 2011 and Andretti, Conway and Hunter-Reay would love to make a repeat appearance in the final round of the 17-race campaign. Patrick, in her final IZOD IndyCar Series race, seeks her second IndyCar victory of her career.
Hunter-Reay, driver of the No. 28 Team DHL/Circle K/Sun Drop Citrus Soda machine, has been one of the hottest racers in the second half of the season. The New Hampshire winner was 21st in the season points after the first eight races, and now ranks seventh after the 16 events. The Fort Lauderdale, Fla., driver is only 19 points out of the top-five entering Sunday's finale. Hunter-Reay finished fifth last week at Kentucky and has two previous starts at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Andretti, at the controls of the new No. 26 Team Dr Pepper TEN car, makes his 100th career IndyCar Series start Sunday and the Iowa Speedway champion is set for another strong showing. Marco was battling Dario Franchitti for the lead last week at Kentucky before being knocked out of contention in a pit incident. Andretti seeks to move up in the seasonal point standings at Las Vegas as he holds down the eighth position currently.
Conway, the Long Beach winner, comes to Las Vegas with the new No. 27 Team Grime Boss entry for Andretti Autosport. Conway, the former Formula One test driver, has made a remarkable comeback in 2011 after a vicious crash at Indianapolis last year. The England native has been competitive in his Andretti Autosport mount throughout the 2011 season and is looking for a solid finish at Las Vegas.
Patrick, driver of the No. 7 Team GoDaddy.com car, makes her second appearance at Las Vegas Motor Speedway this year after a fourth place finish in March in the NASCAR Nationwide race. Danica finished tenth last week at Kentucky and moved back into the top-ten in the current points. The 29-year-old veteran from Roscoe, Ill., has finished a record 50 races in a row entering the Las Vegas race.
Practice begins this Thursday on the 1.5-mile oval north of the Las Vegas strip with qualifying set for 3 p.m. PDT Friday. The IZOD IndyCar World Championships will be televised live on ABC-TV beginning at 3 p.m. EDT.
MARCO ANDRETTI, #26 TEAM DR PEPPER TEN CAR
"I'm hoping that Kentucky was a good representation as far as speed goes for the Dr Pepper TEN car. From there we just need to capitalize on what we have come away with a win. I'm racing Vegas for a win. Period."
MIKE CONWAY, #27 TEAM GRIME BOSS CAR
"I'm looking forward to racing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway this coming weekend for the finale of the IZOD IndyCar Series season. The team seems to have found some speed on the ovals recently so we're looking forward to a strong weekend in the Grime Boss car. I'm sad that the season is coming to an end so I'm looking to finish off strong."
RYAN HUNTER-REAY, #28 TEAM DHL/CIRCLE K/SUN DROP CITRUS SODA CAR
"This weekend's season finale event in Las Vegas is going to be huge. We're all really looking forward to it. After finishing a strong top-five at Kentucky, we're looking to keep that momentum rolling and finish the season on a high note headed to 2012. The last time I raced on the Vegas oval was 2005, but that was a completely different race track. Now with the higher banks we're expecting pack racing like Chicago; the race will be extremely intense from green to checkered. There's a lot going on this weekend on and off the track which should be fun, but most importantly we're looking for that second win of the season in the DHL/Circle K/Sun Drop car."
DANICA PATRICK, #7 TEAM GoDaddy.com CAR
"I'm looking forward to the Vegas race this weekend with the GoDaddy.com car. It's going to be a lot closer racing than most mile-and-a-half tracks we've been to. It's the last race of the year and it's always exciting. After the Kentucky race, the championship just got a little more interesting so it should be a good race."