Hearn Motorsports preview

Richie Hearn Brings Team to Native California SONOMA, Calif., July 13, 2004 -- Richie Hearn got his racing start dominating the karting scene in California. This weekend, the five-time Indianapolis 500-starter will bring his two-race old Star ...

Richie Hearn Brings Team to Native California

SONOMA, Calif., July 13, 2004 -- Richie Hearn got his racing start dominating the karting scene in California. This weekend, the five-time Indianapolis 500-starter will bring his two-race old Star Mazda team to Infineon Raceway for its first race on Hearn's native soil. The No. 70 Showtime/ Samsung/ Skip Barber Star Mazda driven by Raphael Matos, of Belo Horizonte, Brazil, has been an immediate contender in the open wheel, formula car series this year. The Las Vegas-based team earned a top-five in the team's debut at Mid-Ohio, qualified fourth at Lime Rock Park and was running in the top-five there before an accident sent the team back to Vegas for substantial repairs. The Mazda-powered machine suffered significant damage to the nose and right rear of the car while less severe damage occurred to the left side of the car. The Hearn Motorsports crew worked overtime to prepare the car for Saturday's 45-minute Pro Formula Mazda Series' event. Hearn is confident that Matos will return the Showtime/ Samsung/ Skip Barber Mazda to the top of the running order at the 2.53 mile, 12-turn road course in the heart of the Napa Valley here in Sonoma, Calif. Matos and Hearn will get their first opportunity to work together at Infineon Raceway during Wednesday's test day.

The Grand Prix of Sonoma event will be televised August 1 on SPEED at 2 pm (EDT). The New England Grand Prix event, raced on July 3, can be also be seen on SPEED at 2 pm (EDT) on July 18.

Richie Hearn, team owner/manager: "Getting to come back to California with my own team is pretty exciting. It's a dream come true for sure. We'll have a lot of friends and family at Sonoma so there is a little more pressure on us as a team. Plus we have to get back up front. Raphael has been doing a great job for us and the combination of driver and team is really coming together. The team worked very hard to get the car ready to go this weekend and it is 100%. So, we are all very eager to get to Sonoma and get back to where we have worked to be, at the top of the field."

For more on Hearn Motorsports and its 2004 Pro Formula Mazda Series' effort please visit www.richiehearn.com. To learn about Raphael Matos, visit his bilingual site at www.rafamatos.com. For information on the Star Mazda Series, please visit www.starmazda.com.

-hm-

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About this article
Series Pro Mazda
Drivers Richie Hearn , Skip Barber