IRL: Indy500: Walker Racing rookie Sarah Fisher makes history

INDIANAPOLIS, May 20, 2000 - Walker Racing rookie driver Sarah Fisher made the record books today in many ways as she qualified solidly in the field for the 84th running of the Indianapolis 500. Fisher, age 19 is the youngest woman to...

INDIANAPOLIS, May 20, 2000 - Walker Racing rookie driver Sarah Fisher made the record books today in many ways as she qualified solidly in the field for the 84th running of the Indianapolis 500. Fisher, age 19 is the youngest woman to ever qualify for the world's greatest race. She is also the third-youngest driver (male or female) to ever qualify and is the youngest driver in the race this year. Fisher also clocked the most total laps of any driver (386) during practice for the "500." The rookie driver qualified her #15 Walker Racing Cummins Special car solidly in the field at an average speed of 220.237 mph, and will start in 19th place, on the inside of the seventh row. "This is a huge thrill," said Fisher. "You know, there's nothing bigger than the Indy 500. To be in the race is certainly an honor, especially the first time around. I have to give a lot of the credit to my guys, especially my engineer Rob Edwards and owner Derrick Walker. They gave me a great plan to follow for the month as far as qualifying and race setup and just getting a lot of miles down here, and we followed that plan exactly. I think that focus on the part of my team helped out a lot. I'm very glad we're in the race, and now we can work on getting ready for next Sunday." Walker Racing team owner Derrick Walker is a veteran of 20 Indianapolis 500 mile races and returns to the Speedway in 2000 after a five-year absence. "The weather during qualifying made it a very unusual day," said Walker. "The conditions were unseasonably cool, and when we ran in practice in the morning compared to when we actually went out and qualified, the ambient (temperature) changed just enough that the car lost a good mile an hour. Even with those conditions, Sarah was one of the most consistent qualifiers when she went out. All in all, she did a fantastic job of qualifying for her first Indianapolis race. She showed a focus and composure that was necessary to carry her through four laps in the 220-mile bracket. It was a real tribute to her that she demonstrated such maturity in her first season. Similarly, one would have to compliment the entire team, and especially Rob Edwards, who put a plan together for the whole week to raise Sarah to a level where she was able to do what she did during qualifying. It was spot-on, and the handling of the whole week was one of the best Indy 500's that I've experienced. Two other advantages we had were our engine supplier Comptech, who showed a determination to provide us the best power available, and very, very consistent Firestone tires." The Indianapolis 500 will be broadcast live on Sunday, May 28 on ABC, beginning at 11 a.m.

More good news: Walker Racing Sponsor Partner SpeedWRX.com launched a definitive racing website this weekend that features technical race information and insider stories about the Walker Racing team and drivers. Go to www.speedWRX.com for the latest insider information about Walker Racing, team owner Derrick Walker and IRL drivers Shinji Nakano and Sarah Fisher.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Sarah Fisher , Shinji Nakano