IRL: Homestead: Kosuke Matsuura preview

Matsuura Ready for Strong Start to 2006 IndyCar Series Kosuke Matsuura returns to Super Aguri Fernandez Racing for his third year of IndyCar Series competition in 2006. Pleased with the team's progress in off-season testing, Matsuura enters this...

Matsuura Ready for Strong Start to 2006 IndyCar Series

Kosuke Matsuura returns to Super Aguri Fernandez Racing for his third year of IndyCar Series competition in 2006. Pleased with the team's progress in off-season testing, Matsuura enters this weekend's season-opening race at Homestead-Miami Speedway -- the Toyota Indy 300 -- brimming with confidence.

Matsuura, the 2004 Rookie of the Year, is reinvigorated and hungry for his first win after enduring a character-building season last year. He suffered eight DNF's (did not finish) in 17 starts, plagued by a series of misfortunes that resulted in a 14 th -place ranking in the final standings. Despite the setbacks, Matsuura ended the season with seven top-10 finishes to his credit including a pair of sixth-place drives at Infineon Raceway and Watkins Glen International.

Hailing from Aichi, Japan, Matsuura, 26, joined Super Aguri Fernandez Racing after three successful years of European competition with second and third-place finishes in the German Formula 3 and Formula Renault V6 Eurocup Championships respectively.

Matsuura returns to the cockpit of the #55 Panasonic ARTA machine in the well-known blue, orange and white livery, but makes the move to the Dallara chassis for 2006. Additional changes within the team include Chris Finch as race engineer and Tony Leith as chief mechanic. Super Aguri Fernandez Racing also welcomes new partners CanCam magazine, ELS Surround sound systems and TPR piston ring manufacturers to the team.

Kosuke Matsuura, #55 Panasonic ARTA Dallara/Honda/Firestone:
"This is my third year with Super Aguri Fernandez Racing in the IndyCar Series, and I am excited for the start of the season this weekend. I feel I have everything to be successful -- a great team, great mechanics, a great engineer and the equipment package. My goal right now is my first win. I have learned a lot these past two years, even through the bad luck we had last season. We have been working very hard on the setup for our new car in testing, and I am confident for this weekend."

-safr-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Kosuke Matsuura