SAM HORNISH JR. TO ENTER CARFAX 250 BUSCH SERIES RACE AT MICHIGAN INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY BROOKLYN, Mich. (Aug. 14, 2007) -- Three-time IndyCar Series champion Sam Hornish Jr. will make his Michigan International Speedway NASCAR Busch Series...
SAM HORNISH JR. TO ENTER CARFAX 250 BUSCH SERIES RACE AT MICHIGAN INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY
BROOKLYN, Mich. (Aug. 14, 2007) -- Three-time IndyCar Series champion Sam Hornish Jr. will make his Michigan International Speedway NASCAR Busch Series debut Saturday, Aug. 18 in the CARFAX 250.
Hornish is currently fifth in IndyCar Series driver point standings and will return to the Irish Hills of Michigan for the fourth time this summer, his second visit in less than two weeks. He first visited MIS at the end of May during an ARCA RE/MAX Series test in preparation for his stock-car debut on the two-mile oval in the June 15 ARCA RE/MAX Series event.
The laps Hornish took in preparation proved to be worth his time. The Defiance, Ohio, native took the AAA Pole Award and led 29 of 100 laps before Roush Fenway Racing's Erik Darnell took the lead and eventually the checkered flag with Hornish close behind in second place.
Only two weekends ago on Aug. 5, the 2006 Indianapolis 500 winner returned to the high-banked oval to compete in his sixth IndyCar Series race at the track. In the Firestone Indy 400 Hornish didn't have the luck he had just a few months earlier as he was caught up in a crash on lap 143 that had this year's Indy 500 champion Dario Franchitti flip into the air at nearly 220 mph. Although Hornish was able to get his Team Penske Indy-car back on track for a few laps, he finished 52 laps down in ninth place.
If he qualifies for the CARFAX 250 on Aug. 18 it will mark Hornish's eighth start at MIS in a total of three different series. He shared his hopefulness to race on the two-mile oval more than once this summer after his test in May.
"MIS is the closest superspeedway of any kind that I can race on each year, and it would be neat to run here three times in one year," Hornish added. He will also have the added luxury of driving from his home in Napoleon, Ohio, "From home, [MIS] is maybe an hour and fifteen minutes. It's always fun to drive wherever you go and I like not having to go to the airport."
Hornish will have some fierce competition in the CARFAX 250. NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series stars Tony Stewart, Matt Kenseth, Carl Edwards, Mark Martin and Greg Biffle plan on racing in the 125-lap event. In the past five Busch Series events at MIS, four have been won by a then full-time driver of the Cup Series (Dale Earnhardt Jr., 8/06; Ryan Newman, 8/05; Kevin Harvick, 8/03; Michael Waltrip, 8/02).
Defending CARFAX 250 winner Earnhardt Jr. will not attempt to qualify for the race, but five other drivers who have won a Busch Series race at MIS will, including Todd Bodine, Mark Martin, Kevin Harvick, Jeff Burton and Bobby Labonte.