IRL: Fontana: Chip Ganassi Racing preview

* Coming up this Weekend--Target Chip Ganassi Racing heads to the 2 mile D-shaped asphalt oval at California Speedway in Fontana, California this weekend for the Toyota Indy 400 (200 laps / 400 miles). It is the fifteenth race of the 16- race 2004...

* Coming up this Weekend--Target Chip Ganassi Racing heads to the 2 mile D-shaped asphalt oval at California Speedway in Fontana, California this weekend for the Toyota Indy 400 (200 laps / 400 miles). It is the fifteenth race of the 16- race 2004 IRL IndyCar series season. Only one more race remains after this race weekend: the season finale at Texas Motor Speedway on October 15-16-17.

* Tickled Pink for a Good Cause-- The no.1 Target car will be sporting a new look for this weekend's race. To launch Breast Cancer Awareness Month, in partnership with The Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Scott Dixon's No. 1 Target car will undergo a complete pink transformation for the Toyota 400 at California Speedway. Target teammate Darren Manning's #10 Toyota Panoz G Force will also sport a pink ribbon of its own for the California race. All Target Racing team members will also take part in the promotion by wearing pink ribbons on their firesuits or crew shirts to show their support to those touched by breast cancer, as well as raise awareness and encourage fans to help raise vital funds for The BCRF. The racing.target.com team website will undergo a pink make-over for the entire month as well.

* Now Appearing --Darren Manning and Scott Dixon will be on hand at GameWorks at Ontario Mills Mall (Ontario, CA) on Thursday, September 30 from 7 pm (local time) for media interviews and an autograph session with fans at the California Speedway/ SpeedFreakRace Weekend Kick Off Party.

* Road Course Testing- Target Chip Ganassi Racing's Scott Dixon took part in the two-day of test last week at the 2.21 mile road track at Homestead-Miami Speedway in anticipation for the Indy Racing League's three road course races on the 2005 IndyCar series schedule. Five teams including the Target team, representing the various engine-chassis combination packages available in the series, took part in the test to help IRL officials determine the different elements that will be needed for a road-course racing package. Among the items the teams tested were the cooling system, brakes, and transmissions.

* A Look Back-- Last year at the California Speedway, Scott Dixon qualified 3rd and finished 2nd.

* Scott Dixon Highlights-- Scott Dixon had a season high 2nd place finish at Phoenix International Raceway and has taken the checkered flag in the top-10 at eight races this year.

* Darren Manning Highights -- In this his first IndyCar season, Darren Manning has finished a career high fourth place on three occasion (Japan, Nashville and Pikes Peak) and has crossed the finish line in the top-5 four times, and has eight top-tens.

* Driver Points--With just two races left in the 2004 IndyCar season, Darren Manning is in tenth place in the standings with 311 points, while Target teammate Scott Dixon is close behind in eleventh spot with 303 points.

* Catch it LIVE-- Target fans can tune in to watch the Toyota Indy 400 race on ESPN at 3:00 pm (EDT) Sunday, October 3rd or they can listen in on the IMS Radio Network.

* Looking Ahead to 2005-Both Scott Dixon and Darren Manning will be returning for the IRL IndyCar series 2005 season with Target Chip Ganassi Racing. The team recently announced that it has exercised its option to extend Darren Manning's driver agreement into the future. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. Scott Dixon signed a contact extension with the team this past May, just prior to the Indianapolis 500.

Quotes:

#1 Scott Dixon- Toyota / Panoz G-Force /Firestone

"I've always seemed to have a good run at the California Speedway. I won there in Indy Lights and in my first IndyCar season I finished 2nd there last year. It's definitely a place that provides lots of the exciting close wheel to wheel action that the fans like. It seems like this season, and especially lately, there have been even more thrilling races because everyone stays in a bigger pack than usual. I think that's a result to the changes the IRL has made to the aerodynamic and engine packages as well as the work our partner and the work Toyota has done to remain competitive. You could see that there were gains made by Toyota at our last race and we expect there to be more for the final two races of the season."

On driving a PINK Toyota/ Panoz G Force for the race

"Driving a pink race car is sure to attract a lot of attention and I can't think of a better cause," says Dixon whose Target teammate Darren Manning's #10 Toyota Panoz G Force will also sport a pink ribbon of its own for the California race. "Raising awareness is just so important in the fight against breast cancer and I'm proud to do this for the women in my life, especially my mom and two sisters. While a majority of our race fans might be men, they have wives, mothers, sisters and daughters that could be touched by this terrible disease. What many race fans might not realize is that breast cancer is not just a woman's disease. I was surprised to find out that more than 600 cases of male breast cancer will be diagnosed this year and more than half will lose their lives. Our hope is that we can make a difference, no matter how small, just by getting the message out there."

On road course test in Homestead

"It's good to be out running a road course, but we had a lot of rain on the first day and didn't run very long however by the end of the second day I'd say we made a lot of gains. I think the Target team's vast experience and success on road circuits is a huge benefit because we already knew what direction to take and how to prepare for such a test. To be honest, we were expecting to encounter some small problems but that really wasn't the case at all. We know which areas need improvements and where to go in the future, but it was good to give the team a baseline. They did a pretty terrific job to have no problems right off the bat. We'll just go back and look at all our data and see where we need to improve."

#10 Darren Manning- Toyota / Panoz G-Force /Firestone

"We've had a nice little break heading to Fontana and I feel rested and ready for the final stretch of the season. It's been up and down all year but I've had some really good runs in the no.10 Toyota Panoz G Force. I have gotten caught up in some back luck near the end of races a lot it seems. I'm looking forward to Fontana because I think we can do well. The key is going to be to stay with the lead pack. Toyota has been working very hard at getting us a bit more and we expect that to pay dividends in the last two races."

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Darren Manning , Scott Dixon , Chip Ganassi
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing , Chip Ganassi Racing