IRL: Hornish, Castroneves, de Ferran nominated for Espy award

Hornish, Castroneves, de Ferran nominated for ESPY. IRL leads Best Driver category with three nominees. INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, June 10, 2002 -- Indy Racing League standouts Sam Hornish Jr., Helio Castroneves and Gil de Ferran were among the ...

Hornish, Castroneves, de Ferran nominated for ESPY.
IRL leads Best Driver category with three nominees.

INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, June 10, 2002 -- Indy Racing League standouts Sam Hornish Jr., Helio Castroneves and Gil de Ferran were among the seven nominees in the Best Driver category for the 2002 ESPY Awards.

Indy Racing League competitors received the most nominations in the category, with three. Other nominees are defending NASCAR Winston Cup champion Jeff Gordon, 2001 NASCAR Busch Series champion and Winston Cup Rookie of the Year Kevin Harvick, defending Formula One World Champion Michael Schumacher and defending NHRA Funny Car champion John Force.

The 10th annual ESPY Awards will take place at 9 p.m. (EDT) July 10 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood and will be televised live on ESPN. Actor Samuel L. Jackson will be the host of the prestigious ESPY (Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly) Awards program.

Hornish, 22, won the 2001 Indy Racing League championship in the No. 4 Pennzoil Panther entry. He won three races and became the youngest winner of a major-league open-wheel series in modern racing history.

"I'm excited," Hornish said. "It is a very prestigious award. Of all the people in motorsports, it's an honor to be nominated. (NFL quarterback) Jim Harbaugh is a (Pennzoil Panther) team owner, and I've met quite a few football players, but it will be great to be there with all of the athletes for an award."

Castroneves has won the last two Indianapolis 500s in a Penske Racing entry. He and Marlboro Team Penske teammate de Ferran are competing full time this season in the Indy Racing League. Castroneves and de Ferran are first and second in the point standings this season, respectively.

"It's an honor to have been selected by ESPN as one of the nominees for the Best Driver ESPY Award," Castroneves said. "I'm thrilled to be in the company of the other nominees, and I consider it quite an accomplishment to be recognized for this award, especially here in America."

This is the second consecutive nomination for de Ferran, winner of CART titles in 2000 and 2001.

"Certainly, being nominated for the second consecutive time for the Best Driver ESPY Award is a tremendous honor for me," de Ferran said. "It's one of the most prestigious awards in sports."

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jeff Gordon , Michael Schumacher , John Force , Kevin Harvick , Helio Castroneves , Gil de Ferran
Teams Team Penske , Team Penske