IRL: Behind the Barriers: Indy day four

Dan Wheldon will appear on Speed Channel's Wind Tunnel tonight at 10:00 p.m. EDT. Wheldon, driver of the Jim Beam Klein Tools Dallara-Honda entered by Andretti Green Racing has been the target of several pranks pulled by his teammates, most...

Dan Wheldon will appear on Speed Channel's Wind Tunnel tonight at 10:00 p.m. EDT. Wheldon, driver of the Jim Beam Klein Tools Dallara-Honda entered by Andretti Green Racing has been the target of several pranks pulled by his teammates, most notably Tony Kanaan and Bryan Herta. Wheldon had better be watching his back tonight. After winning the race at Twin Ring Motegi in April, Wheldon's teammates celebrated by hoisting into the young Englishman into the air and planting him face first into the beautifully decorated victory cake.

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As the Technical Director for Andretti Green Racing, Tino Belli has been busy preparing four Dallara-Hondas for the Indy 500. In his limited amount of spare time he keeps busy with his young son's karting career. Thomas Belli finished second in the Indiana State Karting Championship over the weekend. "I am a bit disappointed, as we have been very fast all year, but this weekend one of our main competitors found a lot of straight line speed and we had no answer," said Belli. In Sunday's feature race, Belli took the lead on the start but fell to his competitor on the straight.

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After spinning his Dallara-Toyota on two consecutive days, Marty Roth got back to work preparing for the 500. Roth, who managed to spin without hitting anything each time, turned 128 laps today, recording his best lap of the event on the 125th tour. His lap at 212.352 mph surpassed his previous best of 210.923 mph set on opening day.

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Target Chip Ganassi Racing's driver Darren Manning will have his own two minute video segment on ESPN2's Sportscenter at 6:30 pm EDT every weekday during the month of May leading up to the Indianapolis 500. The daily feature called "The Main MANning" debuted May 10th.

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Commemorative posters featuring this year's 500 Festival/Indianapolis 500 theme "Lights, Camera, Traction!" and popular IRL IndyCar Series drivers will be available free of charge to the first 3,000 guests to arrive at the Pagoda Plaza on three separate days in May. The first of three different posters, will be available on MBNA Pole Day Qualifying on May 15. Posters will also be distributed on May 16 and May 23. In keeping with the "Lights, Camera, Traction!" theme, the pit badge for the 88th running of the 500 features a movie camera, a design which has not be used since the feature film "Winning" starring Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward and Robert Wagner was filmed at the Speedway.

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Starting tomorrow, the IRL Fan Experience, a set of entertainment properties for fans, will be at various spots on the grounds of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway throughout the month of May. The interactive, hands-on experience includes areas such as "Indy Racing Challenge," "Indy Racing Kids," and "Indy Racing Pit Stop Challenge." The IRL Fan Experience will be at IMS on May 13-23, 26-28 and 30. The IRL Fan Experience will also be at the 500 Festival Parade Interactive Zone on Saturday, May 29.

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The annual "Racing to Recovery Gala," a benefit for the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation and the Rehabilitation Hospital of Indiana, will take place from 6-10 p.m. Sunday, May 16 at Eddie Merlot's Restaurant, 3645 E. 96th St. in Indianapolis. Bob Jenkins will serve as emcee. The event features a lavish strolling dinner buffet, cocktails, a silent auction and live auction of sports memorabilia and other items. Other items to be auctioned include a painting by Bill Patterson that the artist will paint on site, plus a hot tub provided by Royal Spa. Tickets are $125. For more information or to purchase tickets, call (317) 714-0340 or e-mail racingtorecovery@rhin.com.

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Argent Mortgage Company, co-sponsor of the Team Rahal Argent Pioneer G Force Honda, driven by Buddy Rice, announced the "Argent Fastest Lap" award today. Argent Mortgage will present a check for $2,500 to the fastest driver each day.

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There were 29 cars on the track today. A total of 56 cars are now at the Speedway, and 48 have passed technical inspection.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Darren Manning , Tony Kanaan , Bryan Herta , Dan Wheldon , Sam Schmidt , Paul Newman , Buddy Rice , Marty Roth , Chip Ganassi , Eddie M , Jim Beam
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing