IRL: Firestone Kansas preview

<pre> FIRESTONE FIREHAWK FAST FACTS Indy Racing Northern Light Series Ameristar Casino Indy 200 at Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, Kan. July 6-8, 2001 </pre> Race distance: 200 laps, 300 miles. Firestone tires supplied this weekend:...

<pre> FIRESTONE FIREHAWK FAST FACTS Indy Racing Northern Light Series Ameristar Casino Indy 200 at Kansas Speedway, Kansas City, Kan. July 6-8, 2001

</pre> Race distance: 200 laps, 300 miles.

Firestone tires supplied this weekend: more than 700 (based on 8 sets per car for 22 cars).

Tire staggers available: 1 (approximately 0.45 inches). Past Firestone winners at Kansas: This is the first Indy Racing League event at Kansas Speedway.

Winning history at KC: While this is the IRL debut at Kansas Speedway, Firestone can still lay claim to being likely the only participating member of the modern open-wheel fraternity that has competed in the Kansas City area in the past and been victorious. Indy style races were conducted at Kansas City Speedway from 1922-24 and Firestone was the winning tire on every occasion. Firestone winners at the 1 ¼-mile board track with 35-degree banking were: Tommy Milton (two-time Indy 500 winner), Sept. 17, 1922; Eddie Hearn, July 4, 1923; Harlan Fengler, Oct. 21, 1923; and Jimmy Murphy ('22 Indy winner), July 4, 1924. Board tracks, made of wood and usually consisting of high-banked turns that made for dangerously high speeds, were the racing rage of the 1920s, but most had gone out of existence by the '30s.

Al Speyer, Bridgestone/Firestone Motorsports Director, on the tire selection for Kansas:

"The Indy Racing League is entering yet another exciting new market and Firestone is pleased to be a part of that introduction process. The race at Kansas Speedway gives Firestone Racing a new opportunity to showcase the unsurpassed quality of race tire we produce and supply to every driver in the series. The race tires this weekend will be familiar to the teams because they come from the same production specifications as those used earlier this season at Atlanta and Indianapolis. The Firehawk racing radials performed most admirably in varying, challenging conditions at those two events, and our performance expectations for Kansas are just as high. We look forward to an exhilarating IRL debut here in front of a large and appreciative crowd."

FIRESTONE LEADER AT HALFWAY AWARD:

Last week at Richmond, Buddy Lazier became the third different IRNLS driver this season to lead a 2001 race at the halfway point, picking up a $10,000 bonus from Firestone Racing for the achievement. Two drivers, Greg Ray and Sam Hornish Jr., had absconded with the bonus money at the first six events this season. Ray has been the midpoint leader four times (Phoenix, Atlanta, Indianapolis and Texas) and Hornish twice (Homestead and Pikes Peak). Firestone will present another $10,000 to the Ameristar Casino Indy 200 leader at the completion of lap 100.

-Firestone Racing

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Buddy Lazier , Jimmy Murphy , Sam Hornish Jr.