CHAMPCAR/CART: Firestone Rockingham preview

FIRESTONE FIREHAWK FAST FACTS CART FedEx Championship Series Rockingham 500K at Rockingham Speedway, Corby, U.K. September 20-22, 2001 Race distance: approx. 206 laps, 312 miles (official track/race distances to be determined). Firestone tires...

FIRESTONE FIREHAWK FAST FACTS
CART FedEx Championship Series
Rockingham 500K at Rockingham Speedway, Corby, U.K.
September 20-22, 2001

Race distance: approx. 206 laps, 312 miles (official track/race distances to be determined).

Firestone tires supplied this weekend: more than 850 dry (based on 8 sets per car, for 26 cars).

Staggers available: 1 (approx. 0.40 inches).

Firestone's British heritage: Champ cars raced in the United Kingdom once in the past, when Firestone was not competing in the sport (1978 at Brands Hatch). But Firestone has raced and won in the commonwealth in numerous past endeavors most notably Formula One. Firestone competed in F-1 in the late 1960s and early '70s, winning driving championships with Graham Hill (1968), Jochen Rindt ('70) and Emerson Fittipaldi ('72). Firestone equipped four race winners at the Silverstone and Brands Hatch F-1 courses, the last being Fittipaldi in his title year. Today, Great Britain is home to parent company Bridgestone's championship F-1 tire program. Already in 2001, Bridgestone clinched its fourth consecutive F-1 driver's and constructor's titles.

Al Speyer, Bridgestone/Firestone Motorsports Director, on the tire selection for Rockingham:

"Rockingham presents us the opportunity to utilize the Firestone Firehawk intermediate oval tire for the second time this year. Produced at our Akron, Ohio, technical center, this all-new compound/construction combination debuted at Motegi in May, where it performed flawlessly. Our engineers raised some concerns regarding potentially excessive tire wear at Rockingham after they saw a sample of the track surface this summer, but last month's Rockingham test with Dale Coyne Racing alleviated any trepidation. The Firestone intermediate oval tire turned in a stellar performance then, even on this track with such a porous surface, and we fully expect that performance level to continue throughout race weekend. We believe the British fans are in for a thrilling introduction to Champ car racing."

Al Speyer's thoughts on Firestone driver and friend Alex Zanardi:

"The prayers, thoughts and heartfelt best wishes go out from everyone at Bridgestone/Firestone to Alex and has family. Despite the devastating nature of the accident, the most important thing is that Alex survived. Alex became an immediate favorite among many of us at Firestone Racing when he joined Chip Ganassi's program in 1996. Even in preseason testing, we could tell he was something special behind the wheel. He went on to prove that by winning 15 CART races and two championships as part of the Firestone family before joining our Bridgestone compatriots for a year in Formula One. Besides his sheer talent, Alex's tenacity, drive, friendliness and sense of humor endeared him to us all the more. We're certain all of those attributes will come in handy as he enters the long road to recovery. Bridgestone/Firestone will support Alex in that recovery in any manner possible."

-Firestone Racing

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Alex Zanardi , Chip Ganassi , Graham Hill , Dale Coyne , Jochen Rindt
Teams Dale Coyne Racing