IRL: Richmond: Kosuke Matsuura preview

Matsuura Banking on Experience for Results at Richmond Kosuke Matsuura continues to put a disappointing 2005 season firmly behind him. He heads to the first short-oval race of 2006, the SunTrust Indy Challenge, with four top-eight finishes to...

Matsuura Banking on Experience for Results at Richmond

Kosuke Matsuura continues to put a disappointing 2005 season firmly behind him. He heads to the first short-oval race of 2006, the SunTrust Indy Challenge, with four top-eight finishes to his credit in six starts -- a stark contrast to last season with saw Matsuura sidelined in three of the first six events.

Matsuura, currently eighth in the championship standings, is preparing for his third career start at Richmond International Raceway this weekend -- the smallest circuit on the series' schedule at .75-miles. Saturday's 250-lap night-race sprint will mark Matsuura's ninth career short-oval start. He has steadily made gains at the challenging and fast Richmond oval, finishing 14th in 2004 and ninth last year. This will be his first career short-oval start in a Dallara chassis.

Kosuke Matsuura -- At-A-Glance:

* Will be making his third IndyCar Series career start at Richmond

* Started 11th and recorded his best finish to date of ninth at Richmond last year

* Qualified 13th and finished 14th in his Richmond debut in 2004 after incurring a stop-and-go penalty

* Currently sits eighth in the championship point standings

* Recorded four top-eight finishes in six starts to date this season

* Will be making his 40th IndyCar Series career start, but only his ninth career short-oval start

* Best short-oval finish was ninth at Richmond last season

Kosuke Matsuura, #55 Panasonic ARTA Dallara/Honda/Firestone:
"Richmond is a really tough track, and having some experience here really helps. Everything happens so fast and I remember that my first time here was really stressful. Every year I have a lot more confidence going back to Richmond, and I am really looking forward to the race. The team has been doing a great job and, hopefully, we can close the gap some more this weekend. Last year, I finished in the top 10 in ninth and I think we can challenge for at least a top-five result."

-www.superagurifernandezracing.net

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Kosuke Matsuura