Motegi, Japan (April 17, 2004)---Defending Indy Japan 300 driver Scott Sharp began today's 200-lap event from the 12th position and battled fiercely throughout the day to achieve a top 10 finish. The racing was fast on the 1.5-mile oval of Twin...
Motegi, Japan (April 17, 2004)---Defending Indy Japan 300 driver Scott Sharp began today's 200-lap event from the 12th position and battled fiercely throughout the day to achieve a top 10 finish. The racing was fast on the 1.5-mile oval of Twin Ring Motegi and Sharp, driver of the No. 8 Delphi entry, was able to run in the top 10 for most of the event and hold his position through a series of four pit stops. At one point during the race Sharp ran as high as first place due to pit stop strategies and led two laps of the Indy Japan 300. Sharp finished today's event in ninth position, one lap down to winner Dan Wheldon.
The Kelley Racing team will now return to their shop in Indianapolis to prepare for the next event on the IRL IndyCar Series calendar, the Indianapolis 500 to be held on Sunday, May 30 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Scott Sharp -- #8 Delphi/Dallara/Toyota/Firestone
"Overall it was a good day for the Delphi team. Another top 10 finish definitely gave us good points in the overall championship hunt. I am very proud of the Delphi team and the guys once again gave me great pit stops. We took a big step forward this weekend and that is great for team moral before heading into Indianapolis for the month of May. I am very excited to be heading into Indianapolis with the improvements we made this weekend and I'm looking forward to a good month at the Speedway."
Laps Led: 2
Laps Completed: 199 of 200
*Today was Sharp's 85th career start, his 77th consecutive IndyCar start--an IRL record-- and his seventh season with Kelley Racing and his eighth IndyCar season.
*In the inaugural event in 2003, Sharp scored a victory after starting from seventh place.
*Sharp is currently 11th in points with 61 total in the IRL IndyCar Series championship.
*Sharp finished 2003 in eighth place in the IndyCar Series championship with 351 points. Sharp completed 3,175 laps during the season, more than any other IndyCar Series driver.
*Sharp's victory in April 2003 at Twin Ring Motegi, Japan was his eighth career victory. He is the only IRL IndyCar Series driver to have won at least one event in each year of competition.
*Sharp was the 1996 IndyCar Series co-champion and the 2001 Indianapolis 500 MBNA Pole winner.