Eddie Cheever Named For IROC Series in 2000

Eddie Cheever, Jr. Looks Forward to Second IROC Season Indianapolis, Indiana - The True Value International Race Of Champions announced today that they have invited Eddie Cheever, Jr. to once again rub fenders with eleven of the "world's best ...

Eddie Cheever, Jr. Looks Forward to Second IROC Season

Indianapolis, Indiana - The True Value International Race Of Champions announced today that they have invited Eddie Cheever, Jr. to once again rub fenders with eleven of the "world's best drivers", including NASCAR stars Jeff Gordon, Bobby Labonte and former Indy Racing League colleague, Tony Stewart

"I am delighted to be asked back. It is a great honor to be recognized by IROC," spoke Cheever, who will be going for his third Indy 200 title at Walt Disney World Speedway on Saturday, January 29th. "I so enjoyed working with the Signores last year. Having the chance to once again compete against the best in oval racing is an experience that can't be beat!"

Having finished the 1999 IROC season in 7th place overall with a spectacular season finale 3rd place finish at his home track of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Cheever is looking to put one in the win column in 2000.

"Last year, I let all the talk of how the NASCAR guys always gang up against the open wheel drivers get to me so much so that for the first 2 races I drove every lap like I had to defend myself from a hungry pack of wolves," mused the 1998 Indy 500 winner. "What I came to realize was that the IROC series was a championship of the best oval racers in the world. Even though I was racing the NASCAR drivers on their own turf and in their style cars, it was still possible to win. It was more fun than I ever imagined it could ever be."

As a rookie last year, Cheever learned that while working with the pack may get a driver to the front for most the race, in that final dash to the checkered flag, it would be every man for himself.

"In an Indy car, the driver very rarely works with another driver to cut through the field like in IROC. You guard your turf very aggressively, always looking for clean air," explained Cheever, who finished 7th in the overall 1999 Indy Racing League Point Standings as both a driver and team owner. "I remember at the start of the Talladega race, I was starting up at the front. At the exit of Turn One, I was leading the pack by a foot. At Turn Two, I looked in my mirror and saw a ghost town. Everyone in my lane had moved to the inside and I went from first to last in one straightaway! Lesson learnt!"

Cheever will go head to head with the "best of the best" in oval track racing at four different venues throughout the 2000 season including the two cities Cheever calls home: Central Florida and Indianapolis.

Date                    Venue                           TV      Air Date
Friday, February 18th   Daytona International Speedway  ABC     Mar 12th at 5pm ET
Saturday, April 15th    Talladega Superspeedway         ABC     Apr 16th at 5pm ET
Saturday, June 10th     Michigan Speedway               ESPN    Jun 10th at 12 Noon ET
Friday, August 4th      Indianapolis Motor Speedway     ABC     Aug  5th at 430pm ET

With the 40-lap, 100-mile event at the famous 2.5-mile Daytona tri-oval looming on the horizon, Cheever plans to revisit a few of his notes from last year's lesson book.

"I'm really looking forward to Daytona this year and coming to the race with a different mind set. Last year, I drove the whole race like it was the last lap of the Indy 500," joked Cheever of his 7-lap debut. "Given the chance, I would really like to beat some of my NASCAR buddies at their own game. And trust me, it is a game they are very good at."

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Series IROC
Drivers Jeff Gordon , Bobby Labonte , Tony Stewart , Eddie Cheever