Las Vegas 500K FAST FACTS WHAT: Third annual LAS VEGAS 500K Last of 11 races in the 1998 Pep Boys Indy Racing League season WHERE: ...
Las Vegas 500K FAST FACTS
WHAT: Third annual LAS VEGAS 500K Last of 11 races in the 1998 Pep Boys Indy Racing League season WHERE: Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Las Vegas 1.5-mile paved tri-oval superspeedway WHEN: 1 p.m. (PDT) Sunday, Oct. 11, 1998
DISTANCE: 312 miles (500 kilometers)/208 laps
POSTED AWARDS: More than $1 million
CARS: Dallara, G Force and Riley & Scott chassis; Oldsmobile Aurora V8 and Nissan Infiniti Indy V8 engines; Firestone and Goodyear tires 1997 RACE WINNER: Eliseo Salazar
1996-97 IRL CHAMPION: Tony Stewart
CURRENT POINTS Kenny Brack LEADER:
TV: (Race) TNN (live), 4 p.m. (EDT) Oct. 11 Announcers: Mike Joy, Tom Sneva Pit reporters: Ralph Sheheen, Vince Welch (Qualifying) SpeedVision (delayed), 9 p.m. (EDT), Oct. 10 Announcer: Gary Lee Pit reporter: Vince Welch RADIO (Race) IMS Radio Network (live), 4 p.m. (EDT) Oct. 11. Pre-race show starts at 3:30 p.m. Area affiliate is KRLV- AM, 1340, Las Vegas. Announcers: Gary Lee, Larry Rice Pit reporters: Mark Jaynes, Doug Rice SCHEDULE (all times local): 7 a.m.: Pep Boys IRL garage opens (Oct. 9) 10 a.m.-noon: Pep Boys IRL practice (Two groups) 1:45-3:15 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL practice (Two groups) (Oct. 10) 7 a.m.: Pep Boys IRL garage opens 8:45-10:15 a.m.: Pep Boys IRL practice (Two groups) Noon-1:45 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL qualifications (Best of two laps) (Oct. 11) 4-4:30 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL final practice 7 a.m.: Pep Boys IRL garage opens Noon: Pep Boys IRL cars to grid 1 p.m.: Third annual Las Vegas 500K (312 miles/208 laps) TRACK RECORDS: (Qualifying, one lap, Billy Boat, 26.035 seconds, 207.413 new IRL formula) mph, Oct. 9, 1997
(Qualifying, one lap, Arie Luyendyk, 23.842 seconds, old IRL formula) 226.491 mph, Sept. 14, 1996
(Race, one lap, Billy Boat, 204.360 mph, Lap 19, Oct. new IRL formula) 11, 1997
(Race, one lap, Richie Hearn, 219.191 mph, Lap 53, old IRL formula) Sept. 15, 1996
(Race, average) Eliseo Salazar, 2 hours, 11 minutes, 7.915 seconds, Oct. 11, 1997 Average speed: 142.757 mph THE TRACK: 1.5-mile paved oval Length of front straightaway: 2,657 feet Length of back straightaway: 2,187 feet Turns: 1,610 feet Banking of turns: 12 degrees Banking of front straightaway: 9 degrees Banking of back straightaway: 3 degrees Facility opened in 1996. Las Vegas Motor Speedway has a seating capacity of 107,000. The lavish facility includes 102 luxury suites. LVMS is one of the busiest multipurpose motorsports facilities in the nation. Besides the Pep Boys Indy Racing League, the track played host to events from many sanctioning bodies, including NASCAR, USAC, AMA and the World of Outlaws. Las Vegas Motor Speedway includes a centerpiece 1.5-mile tri-oval, a 2.5- mile road course, a 1.3-mile road course, a half-mile clay oval, 3/8- mile paved oval, 1/3-mile flat track, motocross facility, go-kart track and a drag strip. The facility also includes 2.5 million square feet of industrial space, a wedding chapel and the Champions of Speed/Circle of Honor permanent exhibit. The entire facility covers 1,500 acres. THE RACE: This is the third consecutive year the Pep Boys Indy Racing League has competed at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the second consecutive year that the league championship will be decided at this track. Tony Stewart held off Davey Hamilton by six points to clinch his first Indy Racing League championship last year at this race. RACE NOTES: Kenny Brack, Davey Hamilton and Tony Stewart are the only drivers eligible to win the season championship and the Pep Boys Million bonus at this race. Brack leads the point standings with 312 points and needs to finish eighth or better to clinch his first season title. Hamilton is second with 281 points and Stewart third with 271. Three Indianapolis 500 winners are entered in this event: 1998 champion Eddie Cheever Jr., 1990 and 1997 champion Arie Luyendyk and 1996 champion Buddy Lazier. This race has a strong Nevada connection. Davey Hamilton, second in the Pep Boys Indy Racing League point standings, lives in Las Vegas. Sam Schmidt lives in Henderson. Seven Pep Boys Indy Racing League rookies are entered in this event: Donnie Beechler, Steve Knapp, Andy Michner, Stevie Reeves, Dave Steele, Brian Tyler and Robby Unser. Beechler, Michner and Steele are USAC open-wheel standouts. Knapp finished third in the Indianapolis 500 this year to claim Bank One Rookie of the Year honors. 1993 USAC midget national champion Reeves joined the league after competing in the NASCAR Busch Series. Tyler is the two-time defending USAC sprint champion, and Unser is the son of three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Bobby Unser and an eight-time winner of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.
SERIES NOTES: Tony Stewart has led at least one lap in all 10 races this season, a league record. Davey Hamilton has finished in the top 10 at the last eight races, a league record. If Kenny Brack wins the Las Vegas 500K, he will split $1 million with a lucky fan through the MCI Pep Boys Million contest. Brack won the first two races of the contest series, the Atlanta 500 Classic presented by MCI on Aug. 29 and the VisionAire 500 on July 25 at Charlotte, N.C., to ensure that he and a fan will split at least $100,000. Fans must choose the driver who they think will win all three races in the series. The contest is open at Pep Boys stores through Oct. 5 or via the Internet at http://www.mciracing.com or http://www.pepboys.com/promo/entry.ht m through Oct. 10. Pep Boys Indy Racing League points leader Kenny Brack could bring home more than $1.6 million if he wins the Las Vegas 500K on Oct. 11 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. A breakdown: $1 million: Pep Boys Million to the 1998 Pep Boys Indy Racing League champion. $500,000: Brack's share of the MCI Pep Boys Million for winning races this season at Charlotte, N.C., Atlanta and Las Vegas. The other $500,000 goes to a fan who picked Brack to sweep the races. At least $100,000: The winner's purse at every Pep Boys Indy Racing League event this year has been at least $100,000. Tony Stewart, Billy Boat and Buddy Lazier each could top $1 million in season earnings with a strong finish at this race. Stewart is third on the money list at $961,950, Boat fourth at $940,950 and Lazier fifth at $911,100. Indianapolis 500 winner Eddie Cheever Jr. leads the money list with $1,755,500, with points leader Kenny Brack second at $1,054,500. Billy Boat has won the PPG Pole at the last three races, a league record. He has won five PPG Poles this season, also a league record. Race teams will be allowed to tow their cars to the garage from the pits for service during the race under an Indy Racing League rule instituted in October 1997 at the Las Vegas 500K. Teams are allowed to repair their cars in the garage and return to the race. Teams can't change their engines or chassis. Two Indy Racing League technicians must approve any repairs before the car returns to the track, with Indy Racing League Technical Director Phil Casey overseeing the process. STATISTICS: 1998 Pep Boys IRL 1998 MBNA lap point standings leaders 1. Kenny Brack* 312 1. Tony 2. Davey Hamilton* Stewart 598 281 2. Jeff Ward 3. Tony Stewart* 306 271 3. Scott 4. Scott Sharp 254 Sharp 210 5. Jeff Ward 243 4. Scott 6. Scott Goodyear Goodyear 153 236 5. Kenny 7. Buddy Lazier 227 Brack 145 8. Marco Greco 194 9. Eddie Cheever 1998 winners Jr. 192 1. Kenny 10. Stephan Gregoire Brack 3 188 2. Scott 11. Billy Boat 187 Sharp 2 12. John Paul Jr. Tony Stewart 184 2 13. Arie Luyendyk 3. Billy 175 Boat 1 14. Mark Dismore 165 Eddie 15. Robby Unser (R) Cheever Jr. 1 162 John Paul Jr. 1 * - Mathematically eligible for season 1998 PPG Poles championship 1. Billy (R) - Rookie Boat 5 Tony Stewart 4 2. Jeff Ward 1 1998 Pep Boys IRL 1998 wins by money leaders chassis 1. Eddie Cheever 1. Dallara 8 Jr. $1,755,500 2. G Force 2 2. Kenny Brack $1,054,500 1998 wins by 3. Tony Stewart engine $961,950 1. Aurora 10 4. Billy Boat $940,950 1998 wins by 5. Buddy Lazier tire $911,100 1. Goodyear 7 2. Firestone 3