INDIANAPOLIS, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2002 ^Ã– The Ferrari Challenge series will make its third appearance at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as a support event for the 2002 SAP United States Grand Prix from Sept. 27-29. Following qualifying sessions...
INDIANAPOLIS, Thursday, Aug. 22, 2002 ^Ö The Ferrari Challenge series will make its third appearance at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as a support event for the 2002 SAP United States Grand Prix from Sept. 27-29.
Following qualifying sessions from 5:30-6 p.m. (EST) Sept. 27 and 4:30-5 p.m. Sept. 28, the series will race on the Speedway^Òs 2.606-mile Grand Prix circuit at 11 a.m. Sept. 29, the last race before the Formula One race.
^ÓThe Ferrari Challenge competitors have put on a fantastic race for our fans the last two years, and we welcome them back for the 2002 SAP United States Grand Prix weekend,^Ô said Tony George, president and chief executive officer of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. ^ÓThe combination of exciting racing and exotic Ferrari sports cars is a fine complement to a full weekend of Formula One racing in Indianapolis.^Ô
In the Ferrari Challenge race last September, Steve Earle of Garden Ridge, Texas, scored his second consecutive victory at Indianapolis.
^ÓOur series^Ò third appearance at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is something everyone involved in the Ferrari Challenge series ^Ö drivers and officials alike ^Ö has been looking forward to,^Ô said Maria Homann of Ferrari North America. ^ÓWe want to build the tradition of Ferrari Challenge racing at Indianapolis alongside the growing tradition of Formula One racing at this historic facility. Our drivers are honored to compete in front of this immense gathering of Formula One and Ferrari fans.^Ô
No paid professional drivers are allowed in the Ferrari Challenge, and all drivers must own their race cars. While many of the top drivers in the series compete at professional levels elsewhere, none can have auto racing as their primary source of income. There is no prize money in the Ferrari Challenge ^Ö at stake is a trophy and pride.
The series, now in its ninth year, competes across the United States from California Speedway to Watkins Glen International and even as far away as Misano, Italy. The Ferrari Challenge also visits the Grand Prix of Canada in Montreal, which makes it the only support series to race at both North American Formula One events.
The 360 Challenge cars are factory-built racing versions of the 360 Modena, Ferrari^Òs latest mid-engine sports car. The race cars are fitted with full safety equipment, modified suspension, Brembo racing brakes and Pirelli racing slick tires on BBS wheels.
The 3.6-liter V8 engine, producing more than 400 horsepower, is unmodified. The cars also are equipped with a gear-changing mechanism modeled after the one formerly used in Ferrari^Òs Formula One race cars. The drivers upshift and downshift by pulling on paddles behind the steering wheel instead of reaching for a shift lever on the floor.
Ferrari Challenge cars will produce top speeds nearing 170 mph on the Grand Prix circuit at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Darius Grala leads second place Doug Peterson, 177-163, after six rounds this season. The Indianapolis event is the seventh of eight rounds this year for the series.
SAP United States Grand Prix tickets are available by calling (800) 822-4639 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. (EST) Monday through Friday or online at www.imstix.com. Visa, MasterCard and American Express are accepted. Ticket order forms also can be downloaded at www.usgpindy.com or obtained by writing to USGP Tickets, P.O. Box 24915, Speedway, IN 46224.