IRL: Pikes Peak: Honda preview

Honda To Celebrate 10 Years of Victories TORRANCE, Calif. (August 17, 2005) -- On August 20, 1995, Andre Ribeiro flashed across the finish line at New Hampshire International Speedway for his -- and Honda's -- first victory in American ...

Honda To Celebrate 10 Years of Victories

TORRANCE, Calif. (August 17, 2005) -- On August 20, 1995, Andre Ribeiro flashed across the finish line at New Hampshire International Speedway for his -- and Honda's -- first victory in American open-wheel racing.

This weekend at the Honda Indy 225, Honda and its Honda Performance Development racing subsidiary will mark the 10th anniversary of that event while competing in the IndyCar Series event at Pikes Peak International Raceway.

A Honda victory also will clinch the company's second consecutive IRL IndyCar Manufacturers' Championship.

Ribeiro and his Tasman Motorsports team owners, Steve and Christine Horne, will be the special guests of Honda throughout the race weekend, and will be feted at a celebratory dinner at the circuit on Saturday, August 20, 10 years to the day from that historic first win.

Since then, Honda-powered teams and drivers have been a dominant force in American open-wheel racing, first in Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART) competition and more recently in the Indy Racing League IndyCar Series (since 2003).

In CART, Honda scored a total of 65 race wins through the end of 2002, and an identical number of qualifying pole positions. The company won four CART Manufacturers' Championships (1996, '98, '99 and 2001); six consecutive drivers' titles (Jimmy Vasser 1996, Alex Zanardi 1997-'98, Juan Montoya 1999, Gil de Ferran 2000-'01); and three Rookie of the Year awards (Zanardi 1996, Tony Kanaan 1998, Montoya 1999).

Since joining the IRL at the start of 2003, Honda drivers have racked up a total of 24 victories and 20 qualifying pole positions. In 2004, Honda-powered Kanaan won the IndyCar Series Championship and Honda claimed its first IRL Manufacturers' title. Dan Wheldon won IndyCar Rookie of the Year honors in 2003, followed by Kosuke Matsuura in 2004.

Following that first victory in New Hampshire, Ribeiro went on to win two more times for Honda in CART before retiring at the end of the 1998 season. Today, he is a successful Honda dealer in his native Brazil. The Hornes also retired following the '98 season and today divide their time between homes in New Zealand and Columbus, Ohio.

-honda-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Gil de Ferran , Jimmy Vasser , Alex Zanardi , Tony Kanaan , Dan Wheldon , Kosuke Matsuura , Andre Ribeiro