IRL: Homestead: AJ Foyt Racing preview

Felipe Giaffone: No. 14 ABC Supply Dallara/Honda/Firestone * Felipe Giaffone on season opener in Miami: "I am excited to be back racing full time in the IndyCar Series. My goal is to have a solid race with the ABC Supply team. We'll use this...

Felipe Giaffone: No. 14 ABC Supply Dallara/Honda/Firestone

* Felipe Giaffone on season opener in Miami: "I am excited to be back racing full time in the IndyCar Series. My goal is to have a solid race with the ABC Supply team. We'll use this first race to work through our pit stops, race communications, and all the things that you take for granted when you've worked together for years."When Giaffone raced for Foyt at Indy last year, it was with a team that was contracted to run the third car so Giaffone has no race experience working with his present crew.

* Giaffone on Homestead-Miami Speedway: "This track is a 1.5 mile oval but it's not like the other 1.5 mile tracks. It doesn't have the same grip level as Texas or Chicagoland which I think have more banking. I know the cars have less downforce this year because the IRL mandated less rear wing angle plus the Firestone tires are harder. You won't see four-wide racing here like you do at the other 1.5 ovals but two-wide racing at this place can be thrilling."

* Winter testing: The ABC Supply team participated in both of the IRL Open Tests at Phoenix and Homestead-Miami Speedway in the off season. "I think our tests went pretty good," said team owner A.J. Foyt. "We learned some things about the car and what Felipe likes in a car which will help when we come back to Miami. The speeds aren't what we want yet but that will come." On the road course in Homestead, Giaffone logged 134 laps with his best speed being 109.56 mph. On the oval there, he ran 127 laps for a top speed of 212.56 mph. At the first test in Phoenix, Giaffone ran 220 laps with a top speed of 172.38 mph.

* Three new crew mechanics joined the ABC Supply team in the off season including Wade Crews, whose racing experience includes stints in the former CART (now Champ Car) Series. Two Texans Michael Umscheid, a mechanic who races cars, and his cousin Kevin Schoener also joined the team. The two gained their racing experience in the Texas stock car circuits. Umscheid was one of 10 drivers from across the country who competed earlier this month in the American Driver Challenge Championship at Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway, where his cousin Bradley Riethmeyer won.

* In 2005, Giaffone drove for Foyt's ABC Supply Racing team for the first time when he qualified for the Indianapolis 500 on Bump Day last year. The deal came together very quickly; Giaffone bumped his way into the show, started 33rd and finished 15th in the No. 48 ABC Supply Panoz/Toyota.

* The Toyota Indy 300 will be broadcast live on ABC March 26th, Sunday at 3:30 pm eastern time.

-www.foytracing.com.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Felipe Giaffone , A.J. Foyt