CHAMPCAR/CART: Fernandez visits Texas Motor Speedway

FORT WORTH-DALLAS (April 11, 2001) - CART FedEx Championship Series driver Adrian Fernandez was at Texas Motor Speedway Wednesday to take a look at the facility and preview the inaugural event there on April 29. Fernandez and 27 other CART drivers...

FORT WORTH-DALLAS (April 11, 2001) - CART FedEx Championship Series driver Adrian Fernandez was at Texas Motor Speedway Wednesday to take a look at the facility and preview the inaugural event there on April 29. Fernandez and 27 other CART drivers are expected to be on hand for the Firestone Firehawk 600, presented by Pioneer.


Adrian Fernandez (left) discusses the April 29 Firestone Firehawk 600, presented by Pioneer, with Texas Motor Speedway General Manager Eddie Gossage (right). Photo: TMS

Fernandez, who finished second in the 2000 CART FedEx Series points standings, shared with the assembled media his optimism about CART's first visit to the 1.5-mile superspeedway and his chances for victory in his own team's Tecate/Quaker State/TelMex Honda Reynard.

About running at Texas Motor Speedway: "The series needs to be racing at Texas Motor Speedway. It is an extremely important market for our series and the sponsors. I think it is the right move and with time, as the fans get more familiar with the series, the following here will grow. We know our team will have a lot of fans cheering for us, we are glad to give our fans the opportunity to see us race that may not have had the chance before."

Regarding the 24-degree high-banked superspeedway: "I am looking forward to running at Texas. It will be completely different than any other track we compete at, it is much more banked than Michigan or California, but that may help the teams. The speeds will be safe - we're as concerned about safety as the other race series. The fans don't really care about 240 (mph) versus 220 (mph) - all they care about is that they see a good race. It will be an extremely competitive event."


Adrian Fernandez in front of Texas Motor Speedway's The Speedway Club. Photo by TMS

Regarding Fernandez' relationship with his fans: "I want to give back to my fans that have supported me, to sign an autograph where possible. I have worked very hard to get where I am today, worked many years as a mechanic because my family didn't have the money to finance my racing. Success hasn't changed my attitude toward my fans or my sponsors. Tecate, Quaker State and TelMex have supported me since I was driving formula cars in Mexico. I try to keep my relationships with my sponsors and fans the same as when I was starting my driving career."

Being co-owner of the CART two-car team: "I can't complain anymore about the owners! It's been a challenge but I know it's the smart thing for me to do. I won't be driving forever and it gives me something that I can continue doing well into the future. We have made tremendous strides at each of the first two races. We have had to coordinate 40 crew members since December to work together. It is coming along nicely and we expect the improvements to continue."

On teammate Shinji Nakano: "We were planning on running only one car when we formed the team (with co-owner Tom Anderson) last year. Then we had the opportunity for Shinji to join our team. It was too good to pass up. Shinji has a tremendous amount of ability and was a great addition to our team."

Tickets for the April 29 CART FedEx Championship Series Firestone Firehawk 600, presented by Pioneer, are available by contacting the Texas Motor Speedway ticket hotline at (817) 215-8500, by going on line to www.texasmotorspeedway.com and through Ticketmaster.

-TMS-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Adrian Fernandez , Shinji Nakano , Tom Anderson