IRL: Nashville: SA Fernandez Racing preview

Yasukawa confident heading into Firestone Indy 200 The IRL IndyCar Series travels to Nashville this weekend -- home of Firestone, the Official Tire of the Indy Racing League -- for the Firestone Indy 200. Located in Lebanon, Tenn., southeast of...

Yasukawa confident heading into Firestone Indy 200

The IRL IndyCar Series travels to Nashville this weekend -- home of Firestone, the Official Tire of the Indy Racing League -- for the Firestone Indy 200. Located in Lebanon, Tenn., southeast of Nashville, the Nashville Superspeedway oval is unique, being the only concrete-surfaced track on the 16-race tour. Saturday's 200-lap event is the third and final night race on the 2003 schedule.

Super Aguri Fernandez Racing participated in an open test on the 1.33-mile oval last week, with Bombardier Rookie of the Year points leader Roger Yasukawa walking away with valuable seat time. Yasukawa, whose Race Engineer John Dick guided Alex Barron to his first career IRL IndyCar Series victory on the Nashville circuit last year, is coming off his best result in the series to date with a seventh-place run in Kansas City on July 6.

Roger Yasukawa , Driver - #55 Panasonic ARTA Dallara/Honda/Firestone:

* Will be making his ninth career IRL IndyCar Series start

* Has a 47-point lead in the Bombardier Rookie of the Year standings

* Sits 13th in the championship standings with 138 points -- 21 points shy of the top 10

* Best IRL career finish was seventh in Kansas City on July 6

* Best IRL career start was 10th at Homestead and Phoenix

"We were able to test at Nashville last week. We have pretty good information for the race and a good baseline to start with for the setup of the car. Tire wear is going to be key for the race because of the different pavement, with Nashville having a concrete surface. We finished well in the last race at Kansas City [seventh], and we just need to keep doing the same things and hopefully continue to bring home better results."

FAST FACTS: Twenty-five years old from Los Angeles-- began his career at the age of 12 in karts, competing in both the U.S. and Italy before moving up the racing ladder through Formula Vauxhall Junior and Formula Palmer Audi in England, and Formula Dodge competition in the United States-- entered the Barber Dodge Pro Series at the age of 21, earning Co-Rookie of the Year honors-- competed in the Atlantic series last year, claiming a win at Milwaukee and two additional podium finishes in a partial season of competition-- resides in West Hollywood, California.

For additional information on Super Aguri Fernandez Racing, visit www.superagurifernandezracing.net. Additional information on the IRL IndyCar Series can be found at www.indyracing.com.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Alex Barron , Roger Yasukawa