IRL: Team Menard names new driver

Vitor Meira to drive No. 2 Johns Manville/Team Menard Chevy. INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (May 31, 2003) -- After a strong finish of 12th place in his first Indianapolis 500 last week, Vitor Meira will drive the No. 2 Johns Manville/Team Menard ...

Vitor Meira to drive No. 2 Johns Manville/Team Menard Chevy.

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (May 31, 2003) -- After a strong finish of 12th place in his first Indianapolis 500 last week, Vitor Meira will drive the No. 2 Johns Manville/Team Menard Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone entry in the remaining races of the 2003 Indy Racing League IndyCar Series.

"Vitor has continued to impress us with his patience and determination," team owner John Menard said. "We put him to the test at Indy and he passed with flying colors. We want to give him a chance to gain experience on all the ovals we visit in the IndyCar series to prepare for what I hope will be a championship effort next season."

Meira, 26, has traveled with Team Menard this year as a test driver. With only three days of practice during the month of May, he started 26th for the Indianapolis 500 on bump day as the fastest Chevrolet-powered qualifier. Meira heads to the Texas Motor Speedway next week, where he won the pole and finished third at the IndyCar Series season finale last September.

"Texas Motor Speedway will be the first time in the IndyCar Series where I am going to a track where I have already raced," Meira said. "It is very exciting, with a lot of side-by-side racing and drafting. We have a good baseline for that track. I am really looking forward to driving the Johns Manville/Team Menard car again. I want to thank John and the team for the opportunity."

Jaques Lazier drove the No. 2 car for Team Menard in the first four races this season.

"I want to thank Jaques for all the work and effort he has put into our program," Menard said. "He has been a great leader for this team."

The Bombardier 500 at Texas Motor Speedway is set for the evening of June 7.

One of the founding teams of the IRL IndyCar Series, Team Menard has two championships, 10 wins and an all-time record of 24 pole positions to its credit. Owned by John Menard, the Indianapolis-based team is supported by Menards, Johns Manville, Chevrolet, Menard Engine Group, Dallara, Firestone and Menard Cheever Technologies. For more information visit www.teammenard.com.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Jaques Lazier  , Vitor Meira