Fort Worth, TX (October 12, 2000) - 1998 Indianapolis 500 Champion Eddie Cheever Jr. enters the final round of the 2000 Indy Racing Northern Light Series championship, the Excite 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, intent on claiming the first series...
Fort Worth, TX (October 12, 2000) - 1998 Indianapolis 500 Champion Eddie Cheever Jr. enters the final round of the 2000 Indy Racing Northern Light Series championship, the Excite 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, intent on claiming the first series title for the #51 Excite@Home Indy Race Team.
Cheever and his #51 Excite@Home crew are currently third in the Indy Racing standings with 217 points, forty-one points behind series leader Buddy Lazier and only three points behind Scott Goodyear.
"We need to win the Excite 500, but we can't really worry about anybody else," explained Cheever, who has finished in the top eleven in seven of eight Indy Racing events this season and led five of the eight rounds of 2000 competition. "If we win the race, we'll be in good shape. Our strategy remains the same as it's always been: go like hell, keep turning right, and make sure you don't hit anything hard."
"Texas Motor Speedway is a tough place - it's terrorizing inside a race car," continued Cheever, who led six laps and finished ninth at the popular venue in June. "The last time we were here we had a snake of fifteen cars fighting it out for the whole race. The #51 Excite@Home crew has been very careful in preparing for this event, and Infiniti is giving us engines that are strong and reliable. Still, we don't race in a vacuum, and the points race is a very complicated scenario."
Cheever, who earned the first Indy Racing victory for the #51 Excite@Home team and the Infiniti Indy engine at Pikes Peak in June, anticipates a strong conclusion to a highly productive season.
"I would say we have done well," noted Cheever of the #51 Excite@Home team's 2000 campaign. "We were the first team to win with the Infiniti engine, and we've run in the top three for most of the year. A championship is generally made up of a perfect season, and we wasted one race (Atlanta) when we didn't finish, but we've had a great year with Excite@Home and Infiniti. I'm looking forward to a good, strong finish at the Excite 500."
The Excite 500 will be broadcast at 4:00pm EDT on October 15 on ESPN. Qualifying for the Indy Racing season finale will be broadcast at 3:30pm EDT on October 14 on ESPN2.