IRL: Eddie Cheever faster in first Pikes Peak practice

Morning: 1st 172.654mph 20.851 seconds Afternoon: 1st 173.310mph 20.772 seconds Overall: 1st 173.310mph 20.772 seconds Fountain, CO - ...

Morning: 1st 172.654mph 20.851 seconds

Afternoon: 1st 173.310mph 20.772 seconds

Overall: 1st 173.310mph 20.772 seconds

Fountain, CO - #51 Excite@Home driver Eddie Cheever Jr. paced the field during both Friday practice sessions for Sunday's Radisson Indy 200 at Pikes Peak International Raceway, recording the quickest morning time in his primary #51 Excite@Home Infiniti and the fastest time of the day in his back-up machine in the afternoon practice. Cheever's switch to the back-up car was precipitated by a minor fuel pressure glitch on his #51 Excite@Home racecar. Cheever is currently third overall in the 2000 Indy Racing Northern Light Series standings with 126 points.

Eddie Cheever Jr.: (On posting the fastest and third fastest times of the day in his back-up and primary car, respectively): "Both the primary and back-up #51 Excite@Home cars are running very, very well. We've had no real problems and the handling is right where we want it to be. Obviously it's nice to be fast right away, but as always our focus is on the race. We're third in points - now we have to concentrate on leaving Pikes Peak even further ahead.

It was very hectic out there today. I got to get a bead on Lazier, who's always very tough. I ran a little bit with Scott Goodyear, who's always there at the end. We seem to be very quick off the corners. The Infiniti engine seems to like this Colorado air, so we're going to make the most of it. They say that whoever wins this race always wins the championship, so if that isn't motivation enough for us, I don't know what is."

(On the Infiniti engine): "Historically, this engine has raced better than it has qualified. I do not expect to be on the pole tomorrow. I'd be happy to be in the top six or seven. However, I know that once the flag drops, the torque of the engine will allow us to work our way up to the front of the field. We have put a lot of work into the Infiniti program. We picked up the program at a very important part in the growth of our company, Team Cheever, and we have fantastic partners. Everyone has worked very hard and put a lot of money and effort into the program. I believe we are getting very close to our first win with the Infiniti engine."

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Eddie Cheever , Scott Goodyear