Young Japanese Talent to Contest 2004 IRL IndyCarÂ® Series INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (January 9, 2004) - Super Aguri Fernandez Racing today announced that 24-year-old Kosuke Matsuura of Aichi, Japan, will pilot its ...
Young Japanese Talent to Contest 2004 IRL IndyCar® Series
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (January 9, 2004) - Super Aguri Fernandez Racing today announced that 24-year-old Kosuke Matsuura of Aichi, Japan, will pilot its #55 Panasonic ARTA Honda-powered Panoz G Force/Firestone entry in the 2004 IRL IndyCar Series.
"I have been supporting Kosuke Matsuura through the ARTA Project since he was competing in karts," said Suzuki. "He is very decisive and clever when driving, and he is very fast. I am looking forward to the first win for Super Aguri Fernandez Racing."
Co-owner Adrian Fernandez was on hand when Matsuura turned his first laps in an IRL IndyCar Series car at Phoenix International Raceway on November 12, and was immediately impressed: "I'm excited about the season. I was very impressed with what I saw and believe Kosuke is going to do a good job for us. Obviously, there will be things to learn, but I think he has what it takes to be very competitive."
Matsuura, who began his career in karts at the age of 14, will make his U.S. racing debut when the season gets underway on February 29 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
"It has been my dream to race in a top category and also in the United States," said Matsuura, "so I am very happy to be able to compete in the IndyCar Series. I am especially excited to race at the Indy Japan and the Indy 500. I will do my best to meet the team and the sponsors' expectations."
In addition to Matsuura, the other major change within the team is a switch to the Panoz G Force chassis, which emerged with dual crowns in 2003 - the IRL IndyCar Series Championship and the Indianapolis 500.
"We are very impressed with Kosuke's natural driving ability and appetite for speed," added Anderson. "Kosuke has had enough experience to understand the details of the sport, and has shown in his first three tests the ability to learn very quickly - a trait needed for success in the IndyCar Series. We have also seen Kosuke's larger than life personality in action, and believe this will be a great team motivator.
"We are excited to return for our second season in the IRL IndyCar Series with the continued support of Panasonic and Autobacs, and to continue our long-term relationship with both Honda and Firestone. It's going to be a really good season."
For additional information on Super Aguri Fernandez Racing, please visit www.superagurifernandezracing.net. Additional information on the IRL IndyCar Series can be found at www.indyracing.com.