IRL: Nazareth: AGR/Kanaan preview

Kanaan and Team 7-Eleven hoping for more "Mile-Track" success at Nazareth INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Aug. 19, 2003) -- If the past means anything, a one-mile oval may be just what Team 7-Eleven driver Tony Kanaan needs right now. In two previous...

Kanaan and Team 7-Eleven hoping for more "Mile-Track" success at Nazareth

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Aug. 19, 2003) -- If the past means anything, a one-mile oval may be just what Team 7-Eleven driver Tony Kanaan needs right now.

In two previous starts on tracks of that length this season, Kanaan has been difficult to beat. He started from the pole at Phoenix International Raceway in March and went on to grab his first series victory. At Pikes Peak International Raceway in June, he again claimed the pole position and then drove to a runner-up finish.

Kanaan enters this weekend's Firestone Indy 225 at Nazareth Speedway clinging to an eight-point lead in the chase for the 2003 Indy Racing League (IRL) IndyCar Series championship. Based on the structure of the series point system, which awards 50 points for a win and then drops to 40 for a second-place finish, a win by Kanaan would provide a much- needed extension to his narrow lead with three races remaining.

Qualifying for Round 13 of the IndyCar Series at Nazareth is set for 11:30 a.m. (EDT) Saturday with the 225-lap race scheduled for 3 p.m. (EDT) Sunday, airing live on ABC.

TONY KANAAN, #11 TEAM 7-ELEVEN DALLARA/HONDA/FIRESTONE: ON NAZARETH

"I love it. It's a one-mile oval and we have a very good program for those types of tracks. We had a very good car in Phoenix earlier this year and won that race, so I think you'll see us right up front at Nazareth."

"We were not very happy with the way things went in Kentucky. I mean, we're glad that we extended our lead in the championship, but we were not happy about the kind of race that we had. But, that is just going to make us work harder and that's what we need to do right now."

KIM GREEN, PRESIDENT, ANDRETTI GREEN RACING:

"We're going into Nazareth with a pretty positive feeling. It's a 'driver track,' so a driver can make a difference around that racetrack and I think Tony is as good as they come, as far as being able to make up a little bit if the car is not absolutely perfect.

"Every race form now until the end of the season is obviously extremely important, but this race could really put one of the contenders -- and hopefully Tony -- in a very strong position for the championship. Obviously, that is what we are aiming at.

"One big thing that is on our side in Nazareth is that it is going to be a 'Michael Andretti weekend.' I think that atmosphere carries some advantages for us. I had a long conversation Monday with Tony and he knows this is a very important weekend. The whole team knows it."

- AGR -

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Michael Andretti , Tony Kanaan