LONG POND, PA - Open-wheel racecars haven't raced at Pocono Raceway since 1989, five years before Andretti Autosport K12 driver Zach Veach was even born. Veach will chalk up his inaugural visit to the 'Tricky Triangle' as his first start on another track on the 2013 Firestone Indy Lights schedule as just part of being a rookie driver in the series.
Veach, of Stockdale, Oh., is looking to rebound at the 2.5-mile oval, following what started out as a promising weekend at Iowa Speedway, two weeks prior. The 18-year-old opened the weekend second during both practice sessions before qualifying third for the Sukup 100. During the race, Veach encountered a bad vibration, something he had also battled at Indianapolis and at Milwaukee. He went on to finish seventh.
While the result wasn't what the teen was expecting, it was another feather in his cap for experience in Indy Lights as well as what is to come at Pocono. The Pocono race weekend will mirror that of Iowa in that the entire Indy Lights schedule will be completed in a single day, testing the driver's mental and physical stamina.
The fortitudes will also be tried by Pocono's three differing turns, each modeled after other tracks including the now defunct Trenton Speedway, The Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and The Milwaukee Mile. As Veach turns to Pocono, he is also looking to trump his career best Indy Lights start and finish of second and third, both from his weekend at 'The Mile' last month.
He also heads to Pocono with a new fan in his corner-legendary television and radio host Larry King. The media savvy Veach appeared on King's Larry King Now just last week, where the pair talked racing, distracted driving, bullying prevention, and even Danica Patrick. Veach was only the second race car driver to appear on the show following Patrick and trailing the interview, King told Veach if he was betting on anyone, it was him.
Veach will be betting on a strong weekend on another oval track. Practice is set to begin on Sat., July 6 at 9:00 a.m. with one additional practice session later that morning. The race for the Sonoco Pole Award will be at 1:30 p.m. followed by the 40-lap race at 4:00 p.m. ET.