Indy Racing League News and Notes 2008-08-14

Today's IndyCar Series and Firestone Indy Lights headlines 1. Drivers test modified course at Infineon Raceway 2. Drivers join Colts QB to bowl for charity 1. Drivers test modified course at Infineon Raceway: More than a dozen IndyCar...

Today's IndyCar Series and Firestone Indy Lights headlines
1. Drivers test modified course at Infineon Raceway
2. Drivers join Colts QB to bowl for charity

1. Drivers test modified course at Infineon Raceway: More than a dozen IndyCar Series drivers tested at Infineon Raceway Aug. 13-14 in preparation for the PEAK Antifreeze & Motor Oil Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma County on Aug. 24.

Among those testing was series points leader Scott Dixon, who holds a 78-point advantage over Helio Castroneves with three races remaining.

"It's always nice to go back to a circuit where you've won," said Dixon, who won last year's race on the 12-turn circuit. "It's going to be a tough race, so it's nice to get some testing in."

While Dixon had the opportunity to turn some laps on the 2.245-mile course, Castroneves will have to rely on teammate Ryan Briscoe's assessment.

"You can't test during a race weekend, and you've got to come in with a plan and really go for it," said Briscoe, the pole winner at the track in 2005. "Qualifying is tough, and it's important to do consistent fast laps, and then we go racing. It's nice to get a day of testing in."

This marked the first large-scale test of the modified version of the road course that will be used by the IndyCar Series. Drivers now exit Turn 6 and go directly up the track's drag strip as opposed to veering left before the right-hander at Turn 7.

"I think you will see some new passing with this change," said Vitor Meira, who had a best finish of third at Infineon in 2006. "It's a tough corner because you're going from the fastest section of the track to the slowest, but it should be good."

Other drivers who tested included Marco Andretti, Townsend Bell, A.J. Foyt IV, Mario Moraes, Will Power, Marty Roth, Tomas Scheckter, and Oriol Servia among others.

Practice for the race begins Aug. 22 with the battle for the PEAK Motor Oil Pole Award slated for Aug. 23.

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2. Drivers join Colts QB to bowl for charity: IndyCar Series drivers Scott Dixon, Sarah Fisher and A.J. Foyt IV are among more than 40 athletes and celebrities who will participate in Peyton Manning's "PeyBack Bowl 2008" on Aug. 18.

Each fall, the PeyBack Foundation, founded by Manning, quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts, presents the PeyBack Bowl in Indianapolis, an annual event to raise money for at-risk youth in Indiana. Manning and local and national celebrities hit the bowling lanes and enjoy great food, prizes and competition. Last year's outing raised more than $440,000.

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The 2008 IndyCar Series season continues with the PEAK Antifreeze and Motor Oil Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma County Aug. 24 at Infineon Raceway. The race will be telecast live in High Definition at 5:30 p.m. (EDT) by ESPN2. The race will air live on the IMS Radio Network. A Spanish-language telecast of the race will be carried by ESPNDeportes. The IMS Radio Network broadcast also is carried on XM Satellite Radio and www.indycar.com. The 2008 Firestone Indy Lights season continues with a doubleheader Aug. 23-24 at Infineon Raceway. The races will air at 5 p.m. Aug. 28 on ESPN2.

-credit: irl

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About this article
Series IndyCar , Indy Lights
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Sarah Fisher , Helio Castroneves , A.J. Foyt IV , Scott Dixon , Townsend Bell , Ryan Briscoe , Marty Roth , Marco Andretti , Will Power , Mario Moraes , Vitor Meira