DETROIT (July 30, 2001) - Championship Auto Racing Teams, in conjunction with Dale Coyne Racing and Firestone, will conduct special one-day tests at England's Rockingham Motor Speedway on Tuesday and Germany's Eurospeedway next Monday in...
DETROIT (July 30, 2001) - Championship Auto Racing Teams, in conjunction with Dale Coyne Racing and Firestone, will conduct special one-day tests at England's Rockingham Motor Speedway on Tuesday and Germany's Eurospeedway next Monday in preparation for inaugural FedEx Championship Series events scheduled in September at the new oval venues.
The tests will complement previous simulations run by the series' engine and chassis manufacturers as well as teams in further evaluating a variety of factors, including track surface conditions, tire wear and projected straightaway and cornering speeds.
"We greatly appreciate the assistance and cooperation of Dale Coyne and Firestone as well as the officials at Eurospeedway and Rockingham to run these tests," CART Vice President of Competition Kirk Russell said. "This is an excellent opportunity to gather additional data on the tracks and compare the findings to the simulations. Once we receive the complete data, we will distribute it to the teams to assist them in their preparation for both races."
The testing of a Dale Coyne Racing Ford Lola will take place Tuesday at the 1.5-mile Rockingham Motor Speedway in Corby, England. Former CART driver Alex Barron, who competed for Dale Coyne Racing during the 2000 FedEx Championship Series, will conduct the initial run and former Formula One standout Johnny Herbert is scheduled to follow with his first laps in a Champ Car.
"We are very excited about being able to get Alex back in circulation after the superior job he did for us at the end of last year," Coyne said. "The ability to also provide the historic first running of Johnny Herbert in a Champ Car is also something that I am very proud to be able to offer."
Barron and Dale Coyne Racing will then travel to Germany to initially run some exhibition laps during a race event Saturday and Sunday at the 2-mile oval in Lausitz, Germany. On Monday, Aug. 6, Barron will conduct a comprehensive aerodynamic and tire test in the team's Ford Lola. Firestone is the Official Tire of CART.
The German 500 at Eurospeedway is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 15 (ESPN, 7:30 a.m. live) and will be followed by the Rockingham 500 at Rockingham Motor Speedway on Saturday, Sept. 22 (ESPN, 7:30 a.m. live).
Dale Coyne Racing, currently not competing in the FedEx Championship Series season, is hopeful of returning to competition before the European swing.
"We're actively pursuing sponsorship opportunities and are hopeful to return to the series at some point," Coyne said. "We are looking at securing sponsorship where once we start we will be able to finish out the year as well."
The FedEx Championship Series will be idle this week before returning to action Sunday, Aug. 12 with the Miller Lite 200 at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio (ESPN, live, noon). The series visits seven countries and four continents during the season and climaxes with the season-ending Marlboro 500 Presented by Toyota on Sunday, Nov. 4 at California Speedway in Fontana, Calif. Thanks to a partnership between Marlboro, Toyota, CART and California Speedway, the winner of the season finale will collect $1 million, one of the largest paydays in all of motorsports. An additional $1 million, as well as the prestigious Vanderbilt Cup, will be awarded to the driver who wins the FedEx Championship Series championship.