IRL: Nashville: Cheever Racing preview

BUDDY RICE ON FIRESTONE INDY 200: "Yesterday (July 9) was my first time running at the Nashville track. We headed down for testing, but it started raining and the test had to be pushed back for a few hours. It ended up being a good thing that it...

BUDDY RICE ON FIRESTONE INDY 200:

"Yesterday (July 9) was my first time running at the Nashville track. We headed down for testing, but it started raining and the test had to be pushed back for a few hours. It ended up being a good thing that it rained because we got to run under the lights, which helps us prepare for the upcoming night race. The Firestone Indy 200 will be a fairly close race. The cars you're going to see running at the front will depend mostly on who has the best setup for the track. The setup we used during testing worked really well, so we're looking to take that setup into the race weekend and hopefully be able to qualify towards the front of the grid. So far it looks like we're on the right path to have a really good run at Nashville."

EDDIE CHEEVER ON WHAT TO WATCH FOR IN NASHVILLE:

"Nashville is a unique track because it is made of cement blocks instead of asphalt, which is a very different feel for the car. The track has a strange configuration. Turns 1 and 2 are really tight, while turns 3 and 4 are a lot quicker. When you combine this configuration with the fact that it's a night race, you can guarantee it will be an exciting race for the fans."

TEAM NOTES:

Rice heads to the 1.33 mile oval at Nashville Superspeedway after ending his streak of 13 consecutive races in which he was running at the finish. Rice ended his record at the Kansas Speedway where a persistent oil leak caused him to park his No. 52 Red Bull Cheever Racing Chevrolet Dallara after only completing 85 laps of the Kansas Indy 300.

Rice will show his support of Firestone Motorsports at the Firestone Appreciation BBQ on Thursday, July 17 at Nashville's new corporate headquarters. Rice will meet employees and sign autographs at the cook-out/fund- raiser benefiting Second Harvest.

In his first full-year of the IRL IndyCar Series, Rice finished in an impressive 11th position in his rookie year of the 2003 Indianapolis 500 Race and was the highest finishing Chevrolet-powered car. In addition, Rice has brought home three ninth-place finishes, his best of the season, at Phoenix, Pikes Peak and Richmond. His best finish ever in the IndyCar Series is second in his first race in 2001 at Michigan.

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