Indianapolis Cheever Preview

Cheever hopes Indy track will be his lucky charm for IROC race Indianapolis, Indiana - Coming off a raucous weekend at Dover's "Monster Mile" in Delaware, Eddie Cheever, Jr., turns his sights to the final event of the 4-race International Race...

Cheever hopes Indy track will be his lucky charm for IROC race

Indianapolis, Indiana - Coming off a raucous weekend at Dover's "Monster Mile" in Delaware, Eddie Cheever, Jr., turns his sights to the final event of the 4-race International Race of Champions (IROC) series taking place this Friday, August 6th at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

"It's been quite a year! I guess you could say I haven't had much luck so far this season and we're going into the seventh inning stretch," said the former Indy 500 Champion of his rookie IROC season. "I had a fairly good start in Daytona; at Talladega, I couldn't hold any one's tow, and then, at Michigan, a spark plug lead fell off, which was a big disappointment to me because I was really enjoying my run there. "

Cheever's "seventh inning stretch" is at his home track in Indianapolis and, having won the Indy 500 in 1998, and raced at nine Indy 500 events in as many years, Cheever is hoping that his experience here will give him the edge on race day.

"Indy is a very special place for me. It was the motivating factor for me leaving my Formula One career to return to the United States to attempt to learn how to conquer the great American ovals," said Cheever of the historic 2.5-mile circuit. "If I have any advantage here, it will be that I consider it my home track, but in the end, I know Indy from a single seater's perspective and come race day, that's just not gonna cut it."

In anticipation of the stiff competition, Cheever has spent the majority of the past two days testing with several of his fellow IROC colleagues including Kenny Brack, Adrian Fernandez, Greg Moore, and Dale Earnhardt, Sr. and Jr. The extra seat time and shared insights from veteran Winston Cup drivers have paid off as Cheever feels that he has now reached a greater comfort zone with the heavier stock cars.

"This is the most laps I've done at Indy in a long, long time! In the beginning, the track was very different from the feel we have in the Indy cars," described Cheever of his two test days. "However, once the car was dialed in, I saw a lot of similarities between the two. I think how the cars are set up will make a big difference in one's performance on race day. I'm really looking forward to giving it my all! "

In this year's internationally recognized invitational series, Dale Earnhardt, Sr. has been unstoppable winning three of the four 1999 True Value IROC races. Yet, with the drop of the checkered flag, second placed Mark Martin still has a shot at stopping the Intimidator's "sweep" and taking his fifth True Value IROC Championship title. The starting order for Friday's 4pm start (CDT) is as follows and was determined by the reverse order of point standings:

Driver                          Car #           Color
Eddie Cheever, Jr.              12              Orange
Jeff Burton                     11              Red
Dale Jarrett                    10              Lime Green
Adrian Fernandez                9               Violet
Greg Moore                      8               Silver
Dale Earnhardt, Jr.             7               Gold
Kenny Brack                     6               Dark Blue
Jeff Gordon                     5               Cream
Bobby Labonte                   4               Rose
Rusty Wallace                   3               Powder Blue
Mark Martin                     2               Medium Blue
Dale Earnhardt                  1               Yellow

The 40-lap, 100-mile race will be broadcast on Saturday, August 7th (next day) from 430pm-530pm EDT immediately following the Brickyard 400 Winston Cup race. Check local listings for exact times.

Eddie Cheever, Jr., and his #51 Children's Beverage Group/ Team Cheever Dallara/Goodyear/Infiniti are currently ranked sixth in the Pep Boys Indy Racing League Drivers Championship, just 35 points from the leader, Scott Goodyear. Team Cheever stands fifth in the overall Team Standings with three races remaining in the 1999 season.

Primary sponsorship of Team Cheever comes from The Children's Beverage Group. The Children's Beverage Group (TCBG) is the designer of the RIP-IT SIP-IT(tm) straw-in-the-pouch drinking system that began distribution nationwide in 1997. For more information, call TCBG's corporate headquarters at 847-562-4040 or visit their website at http://www.tcbginc.com. Associate sponsors of Team Cheever include Netoy.com, GO-RACHELS.COM, Menards, Ceramiche Ragno, Goodyear, Infiniti, STP, TruGreen*Chemlawn, Bosch, Pennzoil and Invincible Sportswear.

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IROC
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Jeff Burton , Jeff Gordon , Dale Jarrett , Bobby Labonte , Rusty Wallace , Eddie Cheever , Adrian Fernandez , Kenny Brack , Greg Moore , Mark Martin