Contact: Rick Voegelin High Performance Communications 408-761-2201
For Immediate Release
INDY AURORA V8 RACES FOR EIGHTH STRAIGHT WIN IN LAS VEGAS
Las Vegas, Nev. -- With a perfect record of seven poles and seven wins in Indy Racing League competition in 1997, Oldsmobile's production-based Indy Aurora V8 engine will be racing for its eighth consecutive victory in the Las Vegas 500K at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on October 11.
AURORA UNDEFEATED. The Indy Aurora V8 has dominated Indy Racing League competition in 1997, winning seven consecutive races -- including the Indianapolis 500 -- since the series introduced its new 4.0-liter naturally aspirated engine formula in January. The roster of Aurora winners includes Eddie Cheever, Jr. (Orlando), Jim Guthrie (Phoenix), Arie Luyendyk (Indianapolis and Fort Worth), Tony Stewart (Pikes Peak), Buddy Lazier (Charlotte), and Robbie Buhl (Loudon).
AURORA CLINCHES CHAMPIONSHIP. Oldsmobile has wrapped up the inaugural IRL Engine Manufacturers Championship, scoring 77 points -- the maximum number of points possible -- since the introduction of the IRL's new engine formula in January.
PERFECT POLE RECORD. Aurora engines have started on the pole in every IRL race this year. Tony Stewart won poles in Orlando, Phoenix, Fort Worth, and Charlotte; Arie Luyendyk was the polewinner for the Indianapolis 500. Scott Sharp won the pole in Pikes Peak, and Marco Greco set the pace in Loudon, N.H.
LAP LEADERS. Aurora racers have led every lap in IRL competition in 1997 -- a total of 1,365 laps (1,873 miles) led by 22 different drivers. Tony Stewart has led 647 laps, the most among IRL drivers in 1997. The roster of Aurora lap leaders also includes Buzz Calkins, Eddie Cheever, Jim Guthrie, Kenny Brack, Affonso Giaffone, Scott Sharp, Arie Luyendyk, Jeff Ward, Robbie Buhl, Buddy Lazier, Scott Goodyear, Billy Boat, Davey Hamilton, Eliseo Salazar, Robbie Groff, Stephan Gregoire, Buddy Lazier, Roberto Guerrero, Jimmy Kite, Marco Greco, John Paul, Jr., and Vincenzo Sospiri.
PODIUM FINISHES. Aurora racers have scored 20 out of a possible 21 podium finishes (first, second, and third) in the seven IRL races contested in 1997.
DRIVERS UPDATE. Drivers currently using Indy Aurora V8 engines occupy the top 22 spots in the 1996-1997 IRL championship standings. The top three Aurora racers are Tony Stewart (254 points), Davey Hamilton (244), and Eddie Cheever, Jr. (216).
THE AURORA ADVANTAGE. The Indy Aurora V8 is the engine of choice in IRL Indy car racing. Oldsmobile engines were used by 84% of the starters in Orlando (16 of 19), 86% in Phoenix (19 of 22), 82% in Indianapolis (29 of 35), 88% in Fort Worth (23 of 26), 90% at Pikes Peak International Raceway (20 of 22), 96% (22 of 23) in Charlotte, and 96% (23 of 24) in Loudon.
AURORA V8 UPDATE. Oldsmobile and GM Motorsports have produced 200 Indy Aurora V8 block assemblies to date, and approximately 150 engines are in service -- an unprecedented level of support by a first-year engine supplier in Indy car racing. Oldsmobile is on schedule to produce a total of 300 Indy Aurora V8 engine kits by December.
ENGINE BUILDERS. Nine independent engine builders are supplying Indy Aurora V8s to IRL teams. Five different builders have been represented in the IRL winner's circle in five races: Brayton Engineering, NAC, Roush, Menard, and Speedway. Engine builders are free to modify and substitute internal engine components at their discretion within the limits of the IRL rules.
RACER PACER. Aurora is the Official Pace Car of the Indy Racing League. The Aurora Pace Cars requires no engine modifications since all Auroras have the performance capabilities to pace an Indy car event.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY. Oldsmobile is competing in Indy car racing as part of its 100th birthday celebration. On August 21, 1997, Oldsmobile became the first and only American automaker to celebrate a century in business.
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E-mail from: Rick Voegelin, 08-Oct-1997