INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MARCH 28, 2012 – KV Racing Technology will be looking to have a strong performance this weekend in round two of the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season, the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama, March 30 – April 1, at Barber Motorsports Park in Leeds, Alabama.
E. J. Viso, pilot of the No. 5 CITGO | PDVSA – KV Racing Technology Chevrolet/Firestone machine, has gotten off to the best start in his five-year IndyCar career (third with KVRT) finishing a team-high eighth in the season opener last weekend in St. Petersburg. The 27-year-old Venezuelan, who won the Prototype Challenge class in the 12 Hours of Sebring prior to the St. Petersburg event, will be making his third start at Barber, where he has shown flashes of speed. He qualified 10th in 2010 and has run solidly in the top-10 in both his previous starts on the 2.38-mile, 17-turn permanent road course, but is still looking for his first top-10 finish.
"We were just testing at Barber a couple of weeks ago,” Viso said. “I believe the key to this race is keeping the momentum we built after our first race at St. Petersburg. I think we kept our race pace pretty consistent and we improved the car relatively well during the weekend. Unfortunately, at my test in Barber I wasn't able to get a good read of the car and the changes due to some problems, which we have now fixed. However, I'm confident that with all the testing my teammates did, we are going to have a good starting point for this weekend."
Barrichello, behind the wheel of the No. 8 BMC | EMBRASE – KV Racing Technology Chevrolet/Firestone car, had a “fun” race in his IndyCar debut last week in St. Petersburg. Although he qualified 14th, started 13th, and finished 17th due to a fuel meter reading problem, Barrichello put a dent into his IndyCar learning curve. The 39-year-old Brazilian, who spent the last 19 years establishing himself as one of the top drivers in Formula One, will have a leg up this weekend in Barber because unlike St. Petersburg where he drove his first laps on the first day of practice, he has tested at Barber.
“After my first experience in St Petersburg, I look forward to Barber and can't wait to get there,” Barrichello said. “We tested there two weeks ago, so I least started getting to know the place. Overtaking looks like it's not going to be easy, so qualifying will be important. I hope that my teammates and I have a good race.”
Kanaan, who will drive the No. 11 GEICO | MOUSER ELECTRONICS – KV Racing Technology Chevrolet/Firestone car at Barber, is coming off a strong qualifying effort, qualified ninth, started eighth, but a disappointing result, despite a solid effort driving the car, at St. Petersburg. The 37-year-old Brazilian, in his 15th U. S. based open-wheel season, 11th in the IZOD IndyCar Series and second with KVRT, will be making his third start at Barber. He qualified eighth and finished eighth in 2010 and last year had one of the most spectacular performances ever starting 24th and improving 18 positions to finish sixth.
"Barber is one of the most beautiful facility’s in the USA, it’s always nice to race there,” Kanaan said. “The track has a lot of different corners and elevations which makes it very difficult to have a good car all the time. Qualifying will be very important here because its a difficult place to pass."