IRL: Texas II: AGR, Dario Franchitti preview

Dario Franchitti on the Texas Indy 500k: "The ArcaEx team had a very strong outing earlier this season at Texas, so we're looking to pick up from where we left off. Also, we have the opportunity to finish among the top five in the point...

Dario Franchitti on the Texas Indy 500k:

"The ArcaEx team had a very strong outing earlier this season at Texas, so we're looking to pick up from where we left off. Also, we have the opportunity to finish among the top five in the point standings and that would be a nice way to finish this season."

Dario Franchitti Facts

Texas will mark Franchitti's 20th career IndyCar Series start and will be his second open-wheel appearance at Texas Motor Speedway.

Entering the Texas event, Franchitti has finished among the top-six in four of the last five races.

Franchitti earned his first IndyCar Series MBNA Pole Award when he qualified on pole position at Texas on June 10. He went on to finish second in the event on June 12.

Franchitti earned his second IndyCar Series victory of the season at Pikes Peak on Aug. 22.

Franchitti earned his first IndyCar Series victory at Milwaukee on July 25.

Franchitti's win at Pikes Peak was the third oval-track victory of his career.

Both of Franchitti's victories this season have come on 1-mile ovals.

Franchitti has dominated the two races which he's won this season, leading 111 of 225 laps at Milwaukee, and 128 of 225 laps at Pikes Peak.

The driver of the #27 ArcaEx entry ranks fourth in laps led in 2004 with 347.

Franchitti's winning effort at Pikes Peak marked the third IndyCar Series victory by the ArcaEx team, as they also won at Kansas in July 2003, with driver Bryan Herta at the wheel.

Franchitti has recorded five top-five finishes this season (Pikes Peak - 1st, Milwaukee - 1st, Texas - 2nd, Nazareth - 3rd, Kansas - 4th).

Franchitti has 12 major open-wheel racing victories and 12 career pole positions.

Allen McDonald, Race Engineer, #27 ArcaEx Dallara/Honda/Firestone, on the Texas Indy 500k:

"We had a very good race with the ArcaEx car at Texas in June. We'd like to improve on that second-place finish and end the season with a win. Also, the ArcaEx team has the opportunity to conclude the season among the top five in the point standings, so we'd like to have a strong race to achieve that objective."

IndyCar Series Records Set by Andretti Green Racing in 2004

AGR entries have won a record eight of 15 IndyCar Series events this season.

Andretti Green entries swept the top three positions at Nazareth on Aug. 29 (Wheldon - 1st, Kanaan - 2nd, Dario Franchitti - 3rd); the first time in IndyCar Series history that one team has claimed all three podium positions.

Andretti Green Racing has had at least one car in the top five in 21 consecutive IndyCar Series events dating back to Aug. 10, 2003, which stands as an IndyCar Series record. Kanaan has led 884 laps, an IndyCar Series single-season mark.

The 578 points amassed by Kanaan in 2004 is the highest single-season total ever recorded by an IndyCar Series driver, breaking the old mark of 531, set by Sam Hornish Jr. in 2002 (15 races). Kanaan has recorded an IndyCar Series record 14 consecutive top-five finishes, which sets two new marks - one for most consecutive top fives and one for most top fives in a season.

Andretti Green Racing Team Facts

Kanaan's second-place finish at California clinched the IndyCar Series championship for AGR. AGR has led 1,717 of 3,105 total laps run in 2004 (55.3 percent).

Andretti Green drivers have led the IndyCar Series point standings for 14 consecutive events in 2004, dating to Phoenix (March 21).

Andretti Green Racing drivers occupy three of the top four spots among IndyCar Series lap leaders [Kanaan - 859 (1st), Wheldon - 419 (2nd), Franchitti - 347 (4th)].

AGR entries have been present on the front row of the IndyCar Series grid at 10 of 15 events this season.

AGR has placed two cars in the top five of an event 20 times, including 13 of the past 14 events this season.

Andretti Green Racing won all three night events on the 2004 IndyCar Series schedule (Kanaan - Texas, Nashville; Wheldon - Richmond).

AGR has won every IndyCar Series event in 2004 held at tracks shorter than 1.5 miles in length (Kanaan - Phoenix, Nashville; Wheldon - Richmond, Nazareth; Franchitti - Milwaukee, Pikes Peak).

Andretti Green drivers occupy the top two spots in the IndyCar Series point standings and three of the top six positions [Kanaan - 578 (1st), Wheldon - 498 (2nd), Franchitti - 394 (6th)].

Andretti Green won both the pole (Wheldon, March 20; Wheldon, April 16; Franchitti, June 10; Kanaan, Aug. 21) and race (Kanaan, March 21; Wheldon, April 17; Kanaan, June 12; Franchitti, Aug. 22) at Phoenix, Twin Ring Motegi, Texas and Pikes Peak.

All four Andretti Green entries have finished in the top 10 on four occasions this season (Kansas, Kentucky, Pikes Peak and Nazareth). When they did so at the Kansas event, it marked the first time since Sept. 15, 1996 (Las Vegas) that an IndyCar Series team accomplished that feat.

Andretti Green Racing has 10 wins and eight poles since joining the IndyCar Series in 2003. AGR entries have combined for 56 top-five finishes in 31 career IndyCar Series races.

-AGR-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Dario Franchitti , Bryan Herta , Sam Hornish Jr.