Mario Andretti, Al Unser Jr. to compete at Indy

INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, Sept. 8, 2000 - Indianapolis 500 legends Mario Andretti and Al Unser Jr. will compete in the Porsche Pirelli Supercup races during the SAP United States Grand Prix on Sept. 22-24 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. ...

INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, Sept. 8, 2000 - Indianapolis 500 legends Mario Andretti and Al Unser Jr. will compete in the Porsche Pirelli Supercup races during the SAP United States Grand Prix on Sept. 22-24 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Andretti, 60, from Nazareth, Pa., will drive the #15 entry fielded by the Infineon Technologies team. He won the Indianapolis 500 in 1969 and captured the pole three times in 29 career starts at Indianapolis. Andretti also won four Indy-style national championships. One of the most diversified and accomplished drivers in history, Andretti also won the Formula One World Championship in 1978, the NASCAR Winston Cup Daytona 500 in 1967 and the 12 Hours of Sebring in 1967, 1970 and 1972. Andretti last raced at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May 1994, the last of his 29 Indianapolis 500 starts. "There are a lot of good reasons and a lot of good things going for me to be there," Andretti said of his return to the Speedway. "The cars are fine. They are very difficult to drive. It will be a learning session for me. It will not be an easy task. "It's interesting, because I never imagined driving on a Formula One course in Indianapolis. The track is not the normal F1 road course. You go from very quick to very slow. I tested there (Aug. 27). It's very demanding. It keeps you on your toes." Unser, 38, from Albuquerque, N.M., will drive the #1 entry fielded by the Porsche AG team. He won the Indianapolis 500 in 1992 and 1994, as his victory by .043 of a second over Scott Goodyear in 1992 was the closest in event history. Unser won the CART series championship in 1990 and 1994 before joining the Indy Racing Northern Light Series this year. He won the Northern Light Series event in April at Las Vegas. "I am very excited about being invited to race in the Porsche Pirelli Supercup at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway," Unser said. "I get a chance to run the Formula One racetrack, which is great, and I also get to watch the Formula One race. I think it is going to be a fun weekend, and I am really looking forward to it." "Competing against Mario again is going to be great. I hope he drives it in as deep as he used to." The Porsche Pirelli Supercup is the world's fastest international single-marque sports car series. Drivers compete in technically identical Porsche 911 GT3 Cup sports cars in sprint races of approximately 43.5 miles (70 km). Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars have 3.6-liter, six-cylinder engines that produce 370 horsepower and propel the cars from 0-62 mph (0-100 kph) in 4.2 seconds. The cars have an adjustable rear wing, front spoilers and side sills. Pirelli provides every vehicle with two sets of identical racing tires per event. The Porsche Pirelli Supercup, now in its eighth season, is the only GT racing series to run exclusively as a support series to the Formula 1 World Championship. The 11th and final round of the season will take place at Indianapolis. "It's terrific that Indianapolis 500 legends Mario Andretti and Al Unser Jr. are racing against the fine drivers in the Porsche Pirelli Supercup at Indianapolis," said Tony George, Indianapolis Motor Speedway president and chief executive officer. "Their presence will add another chapter to the storied history of this facility and provide the fans with quite a thrill. "I think Al can attest, after his triumphant return to the Indianapolis 500 in May, that Mario will receive a warm welcome from our great fans." Porsche Pirelli Supercup races start at 3 p.m. (EST) Sept. 23 and 9:20 a.m. Sept. 24.

-IRNLS/IMS-

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Series General
Drivers Al Unser Jr. , Scott Goodyear , Mario Andretti , Tony George , Al Unser