IRL: Kentucky: Kelley Racing race report

Sparta, KY (August 16,2003)---- Sam Hornish Jr. dominated today's Belterra Casino Indy 300 at Kentucky Speedway. Hornish Jr. led almost every lap of the 200-lap event, lapping most of the field and almost putting the field two laps down by the...

Sparta, KY (August 16,2003)---- Sam Hornish Jr. dominated today's Belterra Casino Indy 300 at Kentucky Speedway. Hornish Jr. led almost every lap of the 200-lap event, lapping most of the field and almost putting the field two laps down by the end of the race. Al Unser Jr., driver of the No. 31 Corteco entry, was able to stay with the lead pack for most of the day and after minor changes to the car on the first pit stop, had a good handling car that he was able to bring home in fourth place.

Today's finish was Unser Jr.'s fourth top five finish of the season. Scott Sharp, driver of the No. 8 Delphi entry, had a little tougher day today but was able to stay with it today and bring the Delphi car home in 13th place. Sharp had a struggle on his hands most of the day with an ill-handling car but he and his crew continued to make changes to improve the car during the race and he was able to complete 198 of the 200 laps.

Following Sam Hornish Jr. to the podium were Scott Dixon and Bryan Herta. The Kelley Racing team will now return to Indianapolis to prepare for their next event the Firestone Indy 225 on Sunday, August 24.

Media Note:

Anton Julian, left rear tire changer for Al Unser Jr. who was injured in a pit incident last Sunday at Gateway International Raceway, underwent surgery to repair his injured right knee Friday at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis. Julian was released from Methodist.

Al Unser Jr. -- #31 Corteco/Dallara/Toyota/Firestone

"Today was a good run for the Corteco Bryant special. We had problems with our gearbox the whole race so we didn't have any straightaway speed. I just want to thank all the crew at Kelley Racing and my sponsors, Corteco and Bryant. I also wanted to say that Firestone gave us great tires today, Toyota gave us a super engine and the crew gave me great pit stops all day long it was just a shame we were stuck in fourth gear. We had a good car today, we just couldn't utilize the way we'd like to have but that happens sometimes."

Al Unser Jr. Fast Facts

Today was Unser Jr.'s 320th career start and his 47th IRL start.

Unser Jr. is currently sixth in the IndyCar Series points standings with 259 points.

Kentucky Record--In 2002 Unser Jr. started 14th and finished sixth. In 2001, he started ninth and finished fourth while in 2000 he started 14th and finished 27th after an accident on lap 2.

His victory on June 7 at Texas Motor Speedway was his third IndyCar Series victory and his 34th career victory.

Unser Jr. has won two Indianapolis 500's (1992, 1994) and two open-wheel championships (1990, 1994).

Scott Sharp -- #8 Delphi/Dallara/Toyota/Firestone

"Today was a pretty rough day for the Delphi team. We just struggled all day long. The car was handling pretty rough and we just kept working it and changing it through the race to get it handling better and it just really made for a long day. I am glad we were able to stay in it though today and collect some points and now we'll just have to put this weekend behind us and move on to Nazareth."

Scott Sharp Fast Facts

Today was Sharp's 78th career start, his 70th consecutive IndyCar start and his sixth season with Kelley Racing.

Kentucky Record--In 2002, Sharp started 21st and finished fourth. In 2001, he started from the pole and led 105 laps en-route to a second place finish while in 2000, he started 18th and finished 24th due to an engine problem on lap 16.

Sharp is currently in ninth place in the IndyCar Series with 245 points.

Sharp's victory in April at Twin Ring Motegi, Japan was his eighth career victory.

-www.kelleyracing.com-

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Al Unser Jr. , Scott Sharp , Scott Dixon , Bryan Herta , Sam Hornish Jr.