IRL: IRL drivers practice at Michigan

BROOKLYN, MI - Indy Racing Northern Light Series competitors Eddie Cheever, Jr., Mark Dismore, and 2000 champion Buddy Lazier were joined by CART FedEx Championship Series points leader Kenny Brack at Michigan International Speedway in preparation...

BROOKLYN, MI - Indy Racing Northern Light Series competitors Eddie Cheever, Jr., Mark Dismore, and 2000 champion Buddy Lazier were joined by CART FedEx Championship Series points leader Kenny Brack at Michigan International Speedway in preparation for this Saturday's True Value IROC race-three.

The rains subsided just long enough for the drivers to turn laps on the 2-mile, 18-degree banked oval. At the end of the session the Northern Light drivers had to leave for Texas Motor Speedway where they will begin preparation for the Casino Magic 500 on Saturday night.

Buddy Lazier, a rookie in the True Value IROC series, took a few laps around the speedway in a street car with series test driver Jim Sauter who talked Lazier through the racing groove. After the practice session Lazier said, "I've never driven a stock car here and it is a very different experience than running at Daytona or Talladega. I've got a decent feel for what I need to do this Saturday."

Eddie Cheever, Jr., is the defending True Value IROC race winner, having beat the best in NASCAR here last year. "Everything feels good, the car feels great to me and I'm ready to go."

Mark Dismore was a bit tentative at first, but by the end of the session he was feeling equally comfortable. "I think maybe I was a little rusty those first few laps, but (as the session progressed) the car felt great through the turns and very comfortable," said Dismore.

Kenny Brack commented that the cars were different from his last run at Michigan in the 1999 series. "I would have to say the set up feels better (than in 1999) and the cars are good to go racing."

Brack will remain with the True Value IROC team to get in more practice laps throughout the week and will be featured on ESPN's RPM 2 Night Thursday, June 7 at 7:00 p.m. ET. Brack will serve as the guest driver to draw the car colors for this Saturday's True Value IROC event.

Race-three of the four part series that matches drivers from various forms of auto racing in equally prepared Pontiac Firebird Trans Ams is scheduled to start at 12:00 p.m., Saturday, June 9 at Michigan International Speedway and will be broadcast on ESPN, Saturday (same day) at 5:00 p.m. ET.

In order of point standings, the elite field are Bobby Labonte (NASCAR Winston Cup), Ricky Rudd (NASCAR Winston Cup), Kenny Brack (CART FedEx Series), Dale Jarrett (NASCAR Winston Cup), Eddie Cheever, Jr. (Indy Racing Northern Light Series), Buddy Lazier (Indy Racing Northern Light Series), Mark Dismore (Indy Racing Northern Light Series), Jeff Green (NASCAR Busch Series), *Al Unser, Jr./Scott Goodyear (Indy Racing Northern Light Series), Jeff Burton (NASCAR Winston Cup), and Tony Stewart (NASCAR Winston Cup).

*Al Unser, Jr., is substitute driving for the injured Scott Goodyear who will join the ESPN television broadcast team of Dr. Jerry Punch and 1987 True Value IROC champion Geoff Bodine for this Saturday's coverage of the race.

-IROC

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About this article
Series IndyCar , IROC
Drivers Jeff Burton , Dale Jarrett , Bobby Labonte , Tony Stewart , Jeff Green , Eddie Cheever , Buddy Lazier , Mark Dismore , Scott Goodyear , Kenny Brack , Al Unser Sr. , Jim Sauter