INDY RACING LEAGUE NEWS AND NOTES -- March 15, 2005 Today's IRL headlines 1. Cutaway car adds to ABC Sports and ESPN's innovative coverage of IndyCar Series 2. Patrick cleared to race at Phoenix 3. Kanaans to chair annual fund-raiser 1.
INDY RACING LEAGUE NEWS AND NOTES -- March 15, 2005
Today's IRL headlines
1. Cutaway car adds to ABC Sports and ESPN's innovative coverage of IndyCar Series
2. Patrick cleared to race at Phoenix
3. Kanaans to chair annual fund-raiser
1. Cutaway Car Adds To ABC Sports' And ESPN's Innovative
Coverage of IndyCar Series: ABC Sports and ESPN will add to their innovative coverage of the 2005 IRL IndyCar® Series with the debut of a cutaway IndyCar Series car beginning with ABC's coverage of the XM Satellite Radio Indy 200 Presented by Argent Mortgage on March 19.
The car, which will be the first such tool used during season-long telecasts of Indy-style racing, is a full-sized IndyCar Series machine featuring cutouts along its vertical axis.
It will give viewers a closer look at the inner workings of an IndyCar Series race car, showing everything from the cockpit and footbox to the aerodynamic and mechanical characteristics unique to IndyCar Series racing.
"I think it will afford us the opportunity to do the ultimate in show and tell," said ABC Sports pit reporter Jack Arute, who along with ESPN's Jerry Punch will utilize the car from its position at pit out during the race broadcasts throughout the season. "It's one thing to talk about a failed CV joint, it's another to show where it is and how it affects the performance of the car and driver."
IndyCar Series crew chiefs and engineers will be used with the cutaway car as needed by the telecast team.
ABC and ESPN featured a number of innovative production approaches as part of the IndyCar Series' partnership during the Toyota Indy 300 on March 6 including:
*Continuous coverage of race action through all national commercial breaks with "Side-By-Side," a split screen of the race and commercials. ABC Sports will utilize "Side-By-Side" on the XM Satellite Radio Indy 200 presented by Argent Mortgage from Phoenix International Raceway on March 19.
*The weekend also featured ESPN2 providing viewers with a unique look at IndyCar Series racing with a live telecast utilizing only in-car cameras serving as a simulcast of ESPN's coverage of the race from Homestead-Miami Speedway. Utilizing a separate announce team, ESPN2 used in-car cameras in the cars of Patrick Carpentier, Scott Dixon, Bryan Herta, Tony Kanaan, Danica Patrick, Tomas Scheckter and Scott Sharp.
*Commentator Todd Harris and analyst Gil de Ferran made their debut in the booth with long-time IndyCar Series analyst Scott Goodyear and pit reporters Dr. Jerry Punch, Jamie Little and Vince Welch.
*In addition, ESPN360, formerly ESPN Broadband, provided a live split-screen simultaneous display of ESPN and ESPN2's coverage, allowing users to see ESPN's side-by-side concept and ESPN2's unique in-car camera perspective at the same time.
2. Patrick cleared to race at Phoenix: Bombardier Rookie of the Year candidate Danica Patrick will compete in the XM Satellite Radio Indy 200 Presented by Argent Mortgage after being cleared to drive by Dr. Henry Bock, IRL senior director of medical services.
Patrick, driver of the No. 16 Rahal Letterman Racing Argent/Pioneer Panoz/Honda/Firestone, sustained a concussion in a multi-car accident during the Toyota Indy 300 on March 6 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Patrick was in 10th position at the time of the crash, which began when Kosuke Matsuura spun in front of Tomas Scheckter. Patrick, 22, nearly avoided the melee, but made contact with the car of Ed Carpenter, before making heavy contact with the SAFER Barrier.
Practice and qualifying for the XM Satellite Radio Indy 200 is scheduled for March 18.
3. Kanaans to chair annual fund-raiser: Reigning IndyCar Series champion Tony Kanaan and his wife Daniele have been named honorary chairpersons for this year's CARA Charities Indianapolis 500 Fashion Show on May 26 at the Indianapolis Westin Hotel.
One of the most popular social events surrounding "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing," the Indy 500 Fashion Show is named "Accelerate Your Fashion Senses" and will celebrate its 24th edition with many of the Indy 500 starting drivers and their families assisting in raising funds for local and national children's charities.
Kanaan and his wife have been regulars at the fashion extravaganza as well as major supporters of CARA Charities' fund-raising activities throughout the past decade. Kanaan finished second in last year's Indianapolis 500 and produced one of the most impressive runs in IndyCar Series history by completing every lap in the 16-race season.
"Daniele and I are honored to be honorary chairpersons for this year's fashion show," said Kanaan, who drives the No. 11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone. "CARA is a great racing organization and has helped many needy people over the years. Dani and I have enjoyed the fashion show each year, and we are looking forward to this year's event. It should be a lot of fun, and it is for a good cause too."
The show will open with a social hour at 11 a.m., followed by a noon luncheon. The unique fashion show is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m.
In addition to the drivers, families, friends and local dignitaries who will walk the runway as models, CARA Charities also will unveil the annual "Christmas Ornament" designed by four-time Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser that raises funds to benefit the CARA Children's Fund in memory of Shirley Bettenhausen.
The 10th season of IndyCar Series competition continues with the XM Satellite Radio Indy 200 Presented by Argent Mortgage on Saturday, March 19 at Phoenix International Raceway. The race will be broadcast live by ABC Sports and the IMS Radio Network at 3 p.m. (EST) The race also will be available on XM Satellite Radio channel "XM Extreme" (Channel 152). The next Menards Infiniti Pro Series race is the Phoenix 100 on March 19 at Phoenix International Raceway. ESPN2's coverage of the race will be telecast at 3 p.m. (EST) on March 24.