IRL: Nashville: Panther Racing preview

Panther Looks for First Victory of 2004 INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Panther Racing brings its new look attack to Nashville Superspeedway this weekend for the Firestone Indy 200. In three starts in Nashville, Panther Racing's cars have led 185 laps, ...

Panther Looks for First Victory of 2004

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Panther Racing brings its new look attack to Nashville Superspeedway this weekend for the Firestone Indy 200. In three starts in Nashville, Panther Racing's cars have led 185 laps, and finished outside of the Top Ten only once. Panther scored a third place finish there in 2002, and led 95 laps during the race. A year before -- during the championship season of 2001 -- Panther led 86 laps and finished sixth. Last season the Panther Pack finished 11th and led four laps.

Tomas Scheckter finished 10th at Nashville Superspeedway last season, and 13th during his rookie campaign in 2002. He has never qualified out of the Top Five, starting fifth and fourth, respectively, in his two starts at the 1.33-mile oval. Tomas qualified fifth at Kansas Speedway on July 4th, and finished 15th after running out of fuel shortly before his second pit stop. Scheckter had been fighting for the lead without his telemetry before the fuel shortage.

Townsend Bell is preparing for his second start in the Indy Racing League for Panther Racing, and will be racing at Nashville Superspeedway for the first time. Bell qualified for the Argent Mortgage Kansas Indy 300 in seventh, despite having only two hours experience in an IRL car. Townsend finished 17th after the fire bottle failed inside the cockpit of his Menards/Johns Manville Chevrolet, which forced him to pit several times under green flag racing conditions.

Tomas Scheckter:

"I've enjoyed racing at Nashville in the past and have qualified well both times I've been there. I felt like the Pennzoil car was handling great in Kansas and we had a car that could have won the race. The Panther Racing guys and everybody at Chevrolet have done everything they can this year, and now we just need to get the positive results."

Townsend Bell:

"We did a Chevrolet test in Michigan on Tuesday that went really well. It also was great for the Menards/Johns Manville team because it gave us another chance to work together before we race at Nashville. We're taking this season one little step at a time, and Nashville is going to be another step towards getting this car up front and winning races."

Panther Tracks: Tomas Scheckter has qualified inside the Top Ten for three consecutive races, and in five of the seven races so far this season ..... Scheckter's best finish in 2004 came at Homestead-Miami Speedway, where he finished fifth ... Townsend Bell was the 2001 Indy Lights Champion ..... Panther Racing is the winningest team in the history of the Indy Racing League, and is the only team to win back-to-back IRL Championships (2001-2002) ..... During the last seven races of 2003, the Pennzoil Panther Chevrolet finished outside of the Top Two only twice .... Panther won the Menards Infiniti Pro Series race at Nashville last season with Mark Taylor, which was one of the seven victories the team posted during the 2003 season.

-pr-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Mark Taylor , Townsend Bell
Teams Panther Racing