Motegi: Round three preview

Wheldon eyes third victory at Motegi Indy Japan 300 Date / Time Saturday, April 19 Midnight (EDT) Track Twin Ring Motegi Distance 200 laps / 300 miles TV ESPN2 (Live); ESPN (Taped; 3 p.m. (EDT), Saturday, April 19) Radio IMS Radio ...

Wheldon eyes third victory at Motegi

Indy Japan 300

Date / Time
Saturday, April 19
Midnight (EDT)

Track
Twin Ring Motegi

Distance
200 laps / 300 miles

TV
ESPN2 (Live);
ESPN (Taped; 3 p.m. (EDT), Saturday, April 19)

Radio
IMS Radio Network / XM Satellite Radio (Live)

2007 Winner
Tony Kanaan

2007 Polesitter
Helio Castroneves

Twin Ring Motegi
1.5-mile oval

First IndyCar Series race in 2003

Race Notes:

The Indy Japan 300 will be the sixth IndyCar Series event conducted at Twin Ring Motegi. Past winners Tony Kanaan (2007), Helio Castroneves (2006) and Dan Wheldon (2004-05) are entered in this year's race.

Twelve drivers entered in the Indy Japan 300 have raced in previous IndyCar Series events at the track. Seven of those drivers have led laps (Dan Wheldon 354, Helio Castroneves 231, Tony Kanaan 101, Scott Dixon 52, Danica Patrick 32, Darren Manning 2, and Vitor Meira 2).

Andretti Green racing has three victories at Twin Ring Motegi. Dan Wheldon won for the team in 2004 and 2005 while Tony Kanaan took the checkered flag last year.

Team Penske drivers have started from the pole in the last three races at Motegi. Helio Castroneves won the pole last year, and he awarded the pole based on points in 2006. Sam Hornish Jr. won the pole for the team in 2005.

Three Indianapolis 500 champions are expected to participate in the Indy Japan 300: Helio Castroneves (2001, 2002), Buddy Rice (2004) and Dan Wheldon (2005).

Three IndyCar Series champions are scheduled to participate in the Indy Japan 300: Scott Dixon (2003), Tony Kanaan (2004) and Dan Wheldon (2005).

Drivers entered in the Indy Japan 300 as of April 8 have combined for 52 IndyCar Series victories, 57 pole positions and 821 starts.

Season-to-Date:

* Helio Castroneves is the only driver to finish in the top five in both races this season. Tony Kanaan and Danica Patrick are the only other drivers to finish in the top 10 in both races.

* Tony Kanaan is the only driver to lead laps in both races in 2008.

* Andretti Green Racing has placed three of its four drivers in the top 10 in both races in 2008.

Milestones & Records:

* Helio Castroneves will attempt to make his 100th career IndyCar Series start. It would also be his 97th consecutive start.

* Helio Castroneves can establish an IndyCar Series record for most consecutive seasons with at least one win should he win the Indy Japan 300. Castroneves is tied with Scott Sharp with victories in seven consecutive seasons.

* Helio Castroneves can extend his IndyCar Series record for consecutive seasons with a pole to seven if he can win the PEAK Motor Oil Pole Award.

* Tony Kanaan will attempt to qualify in the top 10 for the 20th consecutive race.

* Vitor Meira has gone 77 starts without a victory in the IndyCar Series, the longest drought of any IndyCar Series driver.

***

Weekend Schedule (local time):

Thursday, April 17
10:30 a.m.-12 p.m. - IndyCar Series practice
1:45-3:15 p.m. - IndyCar Series practice (two groups)

Friday, April 18
10:30 a.m.- 12 p.m. - IndyCar Series practice
1:30 p.m. - PEAK Motor Oil Pole Qualifying

Saturday, April 19
1 p.m. - Indy Japan 300 (200 laps, 300 miles)

-credit: irl

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Darren Manning , Scott Sharp , Helio Castroneves , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Dan Wheldon , Buddy Rice , Sam Hornish Jr. , Danica Patrick , Vitor Meira
Teams Team Penske