IRL: Indy Racing League notebook 2004-06-24

Today^Ã’s IRL headlines 1. Dixon Nominated For ESPY Award 2. Chicagoland Speedway Installs SAFER Barrier 3. Fan Forums Return At Richmond 4. Kanaan Serves As Leader Of The Pack 5. An Eye In The Sky 6. Of note 1. Dixon nominated for ESPY Award:...

Today^Òs IRL headlines
1. Dixon Nominated For ESPY Award
2. Chicagoland Speedway Installs SAFER Barrier
3. Fan Forums Return At Richmond
4. Kanaan Serves As Leader Of The Pack
5. An Eye In The Sky
6. Of note

1. Dixon nominated for ESPY Award: 2003 IRL IndyCar® Series champion Scott Dixon is one of five race-car drivers nominated for an ESPY Award.

Dixon is nominated in the Best Driver category along with NASCAR drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Matt Kenseth, Formula One champion Michael Schumacher and NHRA drag racer Cruz Pedregon.

The 12th annual ESPY Awards Presented by GMC and Under Armor will gather sports and entertainment celebrities to recognize top achievements, relive memorable moments and salute the best performers. Actor/comedian Jamie Foxx will serve as host.

The ESPY Awards celebration will be held July 14 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, Calif. The show will be televised July 18 on ESPN. Fans can vote for Dixon by clicking on the link at www.indyracing.com/indycar.

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2. Chicagoland Speedway Installs SAFER Barrier: The SAFER Barrier is currently being installed at Chicagoland Speedway by Jack K. Elrod Co., Inc. and will be completed in time for the July 9-11 NASCAR weekend.

"The safety of our guests as well as competitors at Chicagoland Speedway is extremely important to us, and we are proud to be able to enhance our safety measures with the SAFER wall technology," said Matthew Alexander, vice president and general manager of Chicagoland Speedway. "The University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Indy Racing League and NASCAR have done a tremendous job developing the SAFER wall technology."

The SAFER Barrier at Chicagoland Speedway will run continuously for 2,289 feet from the entrance to Turn 1 through the exit of Turn 2 and 2,289 feet from the entrance to Turn 3 through the exit of Turn 4. An additional section of nearly 1,169 feet will run along the front stretch tri-oval wall.

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3. Fan Forums Return At Richmond: IndyCar Series officials, drivers and team owners will participate in Fan Forums hosted by ESPN pit reporter Jack Arute June 26 on the Indy Racing League Live Stage at Richmond International Raceway.

The schedule: 5-5:15 p.m. ^Ö Indianapolis 500 champions Rick Mears and Johnny Rutherford. 5:15-5:30 p.m. ^Ö Adrian Fernandez, owner/driver of the No. 5 Quaker State Telmex Tecate Panoz G Force/Honda/Firestone. 5:30-5:45 p.m. ^Ö Scott Sharp, driver of the No. 8 Delphi Dallara/Toyota/Firestone, and Kelley Racing co-owner Tom Kelley.

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4. Kanaan Serves As Leader Of The Pack: Team 7-Eleven driver Tony Kanaan led the most laps (145 of 200) at the Bombardier 500k two weeks ago at Texas Motor Speedway on his way to winning his second race of the season.

Kanaan received three bonus points for leading the most laps and leads the IRL Championship standings with 210 points. Kanaan will be presented with his Marlboro Lap Leader Award check for $7,500 during the SunTrust Indy Challenge pre-race ceremonies.

It is the second time this season and fifth time in two years that Kanaan has won the Marlboro Lap Leader Award, bringing his total earnings to $37,500.

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5. An Eye In The Sky: Larry Foyt will serve as A.J. Foyt IV^Òs spotter for the SunTrust Indy Challenge.

^ÓLarry did a great job for me at Texas,^Ô Foyt said. ^ÓI know he^Òd rather just watch the race and have fun, so I really appreciate him doing this.^Ô

Larry Foyt^Òs next scheduled start in his father^Òs, four-time Indianapolis 500 winner A.J. Foyt, NASCAR Nextel Cup car is the Brickyard 400 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

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6. Of note: Red Bull Cheever Racing driver Ed Carpenter makes his IndyCar Series debut at Richmond but has competed here in the USAC Silver Crown Series. ^ÓI really like the track. I^Òm sure it will be a lot different in an IndyCar (Series car), but it^Òs a fun track.^Ô^ÅDane Carter, son of Panther Racing spotter/driver coach Pancho Carter, will compete in the USAC Silver Crown race June 26 at Richmond International Raceway for Panther Racing.

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The 2004 IRL IndyCar Series season continues with the SunTrust Indy Challenge at 7:55 (EDT) June 26 at Richmond International Raceway. The race broadcast will begin at 7:30 p.m. (EDT) on ESPN2 and the IMS Radio Network. The Menards Infiniti Pro Series Aventis Racing for Kids 100 will take place July 3 at Kansas Speedway. The race will be broadcast by ESPN2 on a tape-delayed basis on July 4.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Matt Kenseth , Michael Schumacher , Scott Sharp , A.J. Foyt IV , Adrian Fernandez , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Larry Foyt , Rick Mears , Cruz Pedregon , Dane Carter , Pancho Carter , A.J. Foyt , Ed Carpenter , Johnny Rutherford
Teams Panther Racing