IRL: Nazareth: SA Fernandez Racing preview

Yasukawa looking to conquer the one-mile ovals The IRL IndyCar Series completes its August swing of back-to-back races with the Firestone Indy 225 this weekend. Round 13 of the 16-race series will be held at Nazareth Speedway in Nazareth, ...

Yasukawa looking to conquer the one-mile ovals

The IRL IndyCar Series completes its August swing of back-to-back races with the Firestone Indy 225 this weekend. Round 13 of the 16-race series will be held at Nazareth Speedway in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, and this Sunday's 225-lap sprint will mark the last visit to a one-mile oval this season.

Despite leading laps at the two previous one-mile ovals contested earlier this year, rookie talent Roger Yasukawa has yet to make a run for the checker -- a record he hopes to change this weekend. A spin at the mid-point of the Phoenix race sent Yasukawa into the wall and to the hospital that evening for observation. At Pikes Peak, Yasukawa was headed for a career-best finish of sixth with just six laps remaining when his rear wing dislodged.

Yasukawa knows he can win on the one-miles as he proved last year at the Milwaukee Mile -- a new addition to the 2004 IRL IndyCar Series schedule -- with a victory in Atlantic competition.

The Firestone Indy 225 will be broadcast live on ESPN beginning at 3:00 pm ET.

Roger Yasukawa, Driver - #55 Panasonic ARTA Dallara/Honda/Firestone:

Will be making his 13th IRL IndyCar Series start

Currently lead the Bombardier Rookie of the Year standings by 20 points

Sits 12th in the championship with 207 points

Best IRL career start to date was ninth at Gateway International Raceway

Best IRL career finish to date was seventh in Kansas City

"We tested at Nazareth Speedway last week, and I am looking forward to going back for the race. We have a good car to start with this weekend. I think it will be a pretty tough race and the weather will be hot. However, all in all, I am looking forward to the race and, hopefully, to being able to finish in the top five."

FAST FACTS:

Twenty-five years old from Los Angeles-- began his career at the age of 12 in karts, competing in both the U.S. and Italy before moving up the racing ladder through Formula Vauxhall Junior and Formula Palmer Audi in England, and Formula Dodge competition in the United States-- entered the Barber Dodge Pro Series at the age of 21, earning Co-Rookie of the Year honors-- competed in the Atlantic series last year, claiming a win at Milwaukee and two additional podium finishes in a partial season of competition-- resides in West Hollywood, California.

-safr-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Roger Yasukawa