Matsuura Targets Rookie Title at Texas The IRL IndyCarÂ® Series heads to Texas Motor Speedway for its season finale with one title yet to be claimed -- the 2004 Bombardier Rookie of the Year. Kosuke Matsuura [Kohs-kay Mat-sur-ah] has led the ...
Matsuura Targets Rookie Title at Texas
The IRL IndyCar® Series heads to Texas Motor Speedway for its season finale with one title yet to be claimed -- the 2004 Bombardier Rookie of the Year. Kosuke Matsuura [Kohs-kay Mat-sur-ah] has led the rookie title chase since the start of the season, and enters the Chevy 500 race weekend with a 35-point advantage over Ed Carpenter. Matsuura will clinch the $50,000 award regardless of where he finishes if Carpenter fails to win the race.
While the rookie title is yet to be decided, Matsuura's 2005 plans are not. Team co-owners Aguri Suzuki and Adrian Fernandez announced on October 2 that Matsuura will return to IndyCar Series competition with Super Aguri Fernandez Racing next season. Matsuura will continue to pilot the #55 Panasonic ARTA Panoz G Force/Honda/Firestone entry.
Matsuura qualified fourth for the Bombardier 500 at Texas Motor Speedway in June, and led the first laps of his IndyCar Series career. He will be looking to complete unfinished business this weekend, however, as his promising run came to an early end with an electrical problem 50 laps from the checkered flag.
* Will be making his 16th IRL IndyCar Series start
* Recorded his career-best finish of fourth at Kentucky Speedway
* Recorded his career-best starting position of second at Michigan
* Currently leads the Bombardier Rookie of the Year standings by 35 points
* Currently sits 13th in the championship standings
Kosuke Matsuura, #55 Panasonic ARTA Panoz G Force/Honda/Firestone:
"The racing at Texas Motor Speedway is incredible, and it is unlike anything that I had experienced before. My first race here was very special because I qualified fourth for the race and led my first laps [in the IRL]. Unfortunately, I could not finish the race because we had an electrical problem. I am confident that we will have a good result this time, and I am going to do my best to stay ahead and win the Rookie of the Year. This would be very special."
FAST FACTS: 25 years old from Aichi, Japan-- began his career in karts at the age of 14-- finished third in the 2003 Formula Renault V6 Eurocup-- finished second in the 2002 German Formula 3 Championship-- won the 2000 Japanese Formula Dream Series Championship before heading to Europe in 2001 to compete in German F3-- has been a member of Co-Owner Aguri Suzuki's ARTA (Autobacs Racing Team Aguri) driver development project since 1998 after climbing up the Japanese karting ranks--currently resides in Indianapolis, Indiana.