TONY KANAAN â€œJapan is such a wonderful country and Iâ€™ve very much enjoyed racing at Motegi the last two years. Itâ€™s so different from the place Iâ€™m from (Brazil), but Iâ€™ve always felt very much at home there. Very much at ease.
“Japan is such a wonderful country and I’ve very much enjoyed racing at Motegi the last two years. It’s so different from the place I’m from (Brazil), but I’ve always felt very much at home there. Very much at ease. It’s shown in my results since I have a couple of top-six finishes. It’s a very nice, state-of-the-art facility that makes for some very good, hard racing.
“I can’t wait to make my first start in my new Hollywood-Mercedes. We’ve done especially well on the ovals so far, so we should be in good shape. We haven’t had the greatest luck in the world on race day, so hopefully we’ll be able to turn things around this weekend. Every race, this team shows it’s potential more and more. One of these times, soon, I think we’ll get it all together and perhaps find ourselves on the podium, or even win one!”
--This is the Tony Kanaan’s third visit to Twin Ring Motegi in a Champ Car, his first with newly formed Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing.
--He qualified 17th and finished sixth here last year with Forsythe Championship Racing.
--In 1998, his Rookie of the Year season on the CART FedEx Championship Series, he qualified 10th in only his second Champ Car race ever, and also finished sixth.
--In his first two-plus seasons on the CART FedEx Championship Series circuit, Kanaan has 42 starts, one race win, seven top-five finishes, 21 top-10 finishes, one pole, and has qualified in the top 10 a total of 16 times.
--Kanaan opened the season with a 10th-place finish in Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing’s inaugural race at Homestead, Fla. He qualified eighth at Nazareth, Pa., on April 8 for a race that was rescheduled for May 27 due to snow. At Long Beach, Kanaan qualified 15th and placed 16th after a mid-race collision with Kenny Brack. And at Rio de Janeiro two weekends ago, Kanaan qualified ninth but did not finish due to gearbox problems.
--Team owner Morris Nunn, technical director for the last four CART FedEx Championship Series champions while at Target/Chip Ganassi Racing, is looking for his first points-producting finish here at Motegi. He started 15th and finished 13th with Juan Montoya last year, and started fourth but placed 23rd with Alex Zanardi in 1998.