Kanaan Teams up with World Champion Triathlete DeBoom to Prepare for IndyCar Series opener at Homestead HOMESTEAD, Fla. (Feb. 26, 2004) - Team 7-Eleven driver Tony Kanaan is teaming up with a champion from another sport this weekend as he...
Kanaan Teams up with World Champion Triathlete DeBoom to Prepare for IndyCar Series opener at Homestead
HOMESTEAD, Fla. (Feb. 26, 2004) - Team 7-Eleven driver Tony Kanaan is teaming up with a champion from another sport this weekend as he opens his quest to win the 2004 Indy Racing League® (IRL) IndyCar® Series championship.
Tim DeBoom, who is a two-time world champion of the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon, is in the Miami area this weekend as Kanaan's guest for the IndyCar Series opener at Homestead- Miami Speedway.
Kanaan, who finished fourth in the 2003 series standings, is also an accomplished triathlete and has been an admirer of DeBoom and his accomplishments for some time. Thursday morning the two athletes met for the first time and then completed a 28-mile bike ride from Miami to Homestead-Miami Speedway, which is the site of Sunday's 300-mile IndyCar Series race.
"It was very cool to ride with Tim this morning," said Kanaan. "Although we just met, we have so much mutual respect for each other. I look at what he has accomplished as a triathlete and think it's unbelievable. But, then he looks at what I do and what it takes to be a successful race car driver and he thinks that amazing, so it's cool. I'm looking forward to having him around with the whole Team 7-Eleven this weekend. Hopefully, we can get a win with him here."
Following the bike ride, Kanaan gave DeBoom a first-hand glimpse into the sport of auto racing by giving DeBoom a ride around the 1.5-mile oval in the IRL's two-seat IndyCar Series race car.
"This is truly a dream come true," said DeBoom. "It is such an honor to get to share this experience with an amazing driver and athlete like Tony Kanaan. Coming into this weekend I already had an enormous regard for Tony and Indy and the sport (of auto racing). I can say now that my eyes have been opened to the incredible skill, intelligence, and endurance that these drivers like Tony must have to do this job."
DeBoom won the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon in 2001 and 2002, becoming just the third male in history to win the grueling event in consecutive years. The Hawaii Ironman consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike ride and a 26.2-mile run. In July, DeBoom will try to become the first American to win the Ironman Germany Triathlon in Frankfurt, Germany, competing against what is expected to be the strongest field ever assembled outside of Hawaii.
In addition to his IndyCar Series schedule, Kanaan also has a triathlon on his calendar. The 29-year old Brazilian is one of 2,200 competitors entered in the California Half Ironman, which will be held in Oceanside, Calif., on April 3.
DeBoom will spend this weekend as an honorary member of Kanaan's Team 7-Eleven pit crew and will assist the crew in Kanaan's pit during Sunday's season opener.