IPS: Homestead: Erwin, Simmons to make debuts

Erwin, Simmons to make Infiniti Pro Series debuts at Homestead-Miami. INDIANAPOLIS, Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2003 -- IRL IndyCar Series veteran Brandon Erwin and two-time Barber Dodge Pro Series champion Jeff Simmons will compete in the 2003 IRL ...

Erwin, Simmons to make Infiniti Pro Series debuts at Homestead-Miami.

INDIANAPOLIS, Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2003 -- IRL IndyCar Series veteran Brandon Erwin and two-time Barber Dodge Pro Series champion Jeff Simmons will compete in the 2003 IRL Infiniti Pro Series, both drivers announced Feb. 26.

Erwin, 27, from Denton, Texas, will drive the No. 99 Natural Golf/Sam Schmidt Motorsports Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone beginning with the Miami 100 on March 2 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

"I am extremely honored to have been chosen to drive the Natural Golf entry," Erwin said. "I have always dreamed of one day competing in the Indy 500, and hopefully running in this series will give me the experience necessary to get there. This is just one more step in the process, and I greatly appreciate Natural Golf's support."

Simmons, 26, from New York, also will debut at Homestead-Miami, driving the No. 20 Western Union Speed Team/Duesenberg Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone for Keith Duesenberg Racing.

"I've run cars with similar horsepower before on some of the tracks we're going to be competing on," Simmons said. "So, I think we're going to be competitive straightaway. Our car just turned a wheel for the first time last week, so we don't really have any time testing, really, but I have a lot of confidence in the team and my engineer, Dave McMillan, and I think we're going to be able to challenge for wins right away and the championship."

Erwin competed in three IRL IndyCar Series events in 2001, finishing a career-best 14th at Phoenix International Raceway. He also won two national karting championships between 1989-97.

Simmons is the only two-time winner of the Barber Dodge Pro Series championship, taking the title in 1998 and 1999. He also has experience in Indy Lights, finishing seventh in the 2000 championship with Team Green.

For ticket information for the season-opening Miami 100 at Homestead-Miami, call (305) 230-RACE, visit www.homesteadmiamispeedway.com or any Ticketmaster outlet.

-irl-

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Series Indy Lights
Drivers Brandon Erwin , Jeff Simmons