Strongest field ever for Surfers Nikon Indy 300
A total of 24 drivers - including three former Gold Coast race winners, 10 2008 IndyCar Series race winners, five Indy 500 champions and the famous racing families of Rahal, Andretti and Foyt â€“ will hit the track next weekend to form the biggest Surfers Paradise field since 2001.
Andretti and Rahal will watch on from pit lane as their sons, Marco and Graham, both IndyCar Series race winners, go at it on one of the worldâ€™s most demanding street courses.
AJ Foyt IV, the grandson of four-time Indy 500 winner, 1992 Gold Coast race entrant and current IRL team owner, AJ Foyt, will also be making his Queensland debut.
The five former Indy 500 winners include reigning winner and IndyCar Series champion - Brisbane-born Kiwi Scott Dixon.
The field will also include high-profile female driver Danica Patrick, who became the first woman to win a major open-wheel event when the IndyCar Series headed to Japan earlier this year.
On top of that there will be the return of some of the biggest team names in open-wheel racing the likes of Penske, Ganassi, Andretti-Green and Newman/Haas/Lanigan.
The combination of the IndyCar Series field compliments an impressive field of 29 cars that will compete in Round 11 of the V8 Supercar championship on the same weekend.
Nikon Indy 300 General Manager Greg Hooton said he was thrilled at the depth and quality of the field which he suggested could produce one of the greatest races ever on the streets of Surfers Paradise.
â€śThis is one of strongest ever fields we have assembled for the Nikon Indy 300 â€“ the quality of the names on this entry list is just phenomenal,â€ť said Hooton.
â€śThe quality and depth of the IndyCar and V8 Supercar fields and the variety of out support program means that we again have one of the truly great festivals in world motorsports and that is something we can all be tremendously proud of.
â€śTicket sales for the event have been strong and I am sure the confirmation of this quality field will be the icing on the cake for so many race fans. A race win at the Gold Coast is a box so many of these guys want to tick, including our own local contingent of Will Power, Ryan Briscoe and Scott Dixon and I am sure their desire is going to give us a fantastic race.â€ť
FAST FACTS ON THE 2008 NIKON INDY 300 FIELD:
- A total of 24 drivers will line-up in next weekâ€™s race in one of the most spectacular fields ever assembled.
- The field will include three former Gold Coast race winners â€“ Dario Franchitti, Bruno Junqueira and Ryan Hunter-Reay
- Half of the 24 have previously raced on the Gold Coast with Helio Castroneves, Ryan Briscoe, Scott Dixon, Tony Kanaan, Will Power, Graham Rahal, Oriol Servia, Alex Tagliani and Justin Wilson combining with Franchitti, Junqueira and Hunter-Reay having made 49 starts between them.
- Of those 12 previous starters, eight have led laps (Franchitti 62, Junqueira 55, Power 23, Hunter-Reay 15, Servia 6, Wilson 4, Dixon 3 and Tagliani 1)
- The field includes 10 2008 IndyCar Series race winners Scott Dixon, Helio Castroneves, Danica Patrick, Will Power, Ryan Briscoe, Dan Wheldon, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Tony Kanaan, Graham Rahal and Justin Wilson
- The field also includes five former Indy 500 winners including Scott Dixon, Dario Franchitti, Helio Castroneves, Dan Wheldon and Buddy Rice.
With 96 hours of non-stop excitement over October 23-26 as the Gold Coast comes alive to the sound of the IndyCar Series Cars burning up the track and Australiaâ€™s own V8 Supercars scorching around one of the most famous beach-side cities in the world, the event is the hottest ticket in town.
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