Three drivers test for Schmidt at Phoenix

AVONDALE, Ariz., Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2003 -- Sam Schmidt Motorsports tested Dec. 1-2 at Phoenix International Raceway in preparation for the 2004 Menards Infiniti Pro Series season.

Road racer Larry Mason joined Pro Series veterans Thiago Medeiros and Brad Pollard for the two-day test at the 1-mile desert oval.

"Sam invited me to do the test, and it was a good opportunity to get more track time in the Pro Series car," said Medeiros, who earned his first series victory at the Texas season finale in October. "I'm happy to be driving and developing the Firestone tires and my performance, too."

Medeiros recorded lap times in the low 23-second range. Mark Taylor earned the pole for the Phoenix 100 in March with a fast lap of 24.0141 seconds, 149.912 mph.

"I'm still working to get sponsorship for next season," said Medeiros, who finished fourth in points as a series rookie. "I'm doing everything to be in the Infiniti Pro Series in 2004. I want to be in the series next year."

Newcomer Mason completed 100 miles in the No. 99 Sam Schmidt Motorsports Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone in his oval debut.

"My goal going in was to be smooth and consistent," Mason said. "It went really well. My very first time on an oval was a real eye-opening experience. It was awesome, and I appreciate Sam giving me the opportunity."

Team owner Schmidt said the team is preparing for a strong 2004 season.

"We've evaluating our options for 2004," Schmidt said. "Recognizing that Phoenix is one of the more technical and difficult tracks that we race on, it gives us a chance to gather information and data to help us be more competitive next year."

The 2004 Menards Infiniti Pro Series season begins Feb. 29 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.