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Sheriff slaps Pagenaud with speeding ticket
Team Australia has assisted officials of the Grand Prix of Phoenix in conducting a noise level test in Arizona today, as new Aussie Vineyards recruit Simon Pagenaud received a shock speeding ticket as part of the proceedings.

Team Australia is geared up for a busy and successful 2007 racing season, but the green and gold Champ Car squad took some time out today to assist officials with a noise test ahead of December’s Grand Prix of Phoenix in Arizona.

The team kicked off the start to a hectic week as they participated in the Grand Prix of Phoenix noise test, which took place today in downtown Phoenix. Team Australia was asked by Champ Car and the Grand Prix of Phoenix promoters Dale Jensen and Bradley Yonover of DDB Ventures to conduct a demonstration to see if the noise of 750 horsepower Champ Cars would disrupt the MSCO 911 call centre.

The Champ Car World Series and Team Australia will be visiting Phoenix on November 30 to December 2, the first time the series will return to Phoenix since 1995. The speed machines will be zooming through downtown Phoenix and zipping by the MCSO 911 call centre, making noise a concern for the Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, so the Grand Prix of Phoenix promoters conducted a one-day noise measurement study, with Team Australia lending its services for the task.

“It’s great to be back in Phoenix,” said Team Australia co-owner Derrick Walker.

“When we were asked to help in the noise test, we jumped on it because Phoenix has always been a great event and anything we can do to help make it a success, then we were all for it.”

Today’s study proved to be very successful as Team Australia drivers Will Power of Australia and rookie Frenchman Simon Pagenaud were on hand for the test. Freight containers and plastic insulation helped to mask the noise and call centre employees were left unaware of cars racing outside.

“I really enjoyed having the opportunity to take part in the noise test,” said Power, the 2006 Champ Car Rookie of the Year.

“We got to see a good portion of the circuit and what to expect for the Phoenix race along making the sheriff happy with the noise level. Today was a very good test all around for everyone and for the event itself.”

Not only was the test a success, but fun as well and a bit shocking for Pagenaud. America's toughest sheriff, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Apaio, gave Mr. Pagenaud a citation for speeding as he zoomed past the call centre, helping to make the day more fun for the Aussie Vineyards team.

“At first I was a little shocked that I got a speeding ticket from the sheriff, but in the end it was a lot of fun and I had a really nice talk with him,” said Pagenaud.

“Today was a blast and so good to be back in the car. I’m so excited that we got to be a part of the study. I think we answered some questions to the noise problem, but I was quite surprised I was going to get a speeding ticket.”

Central, First and Third Avenues were closed as Team Australia completed a total of three sessions today at 9:30am, 11:30am, and 1:30pm. The study was such a success that officials had all the confirmation they needed, canceling the last session scheduled for 3:00pm. Team Australia PR

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