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Briscoe eager to race in home country
Ryan Briscoe was born and raised in Sydney, Australia – about 600 miles south of Surfers Paradise, site of the Nikon Indy 300 on Oct. 26. Despite winning three national karting championships as a youth, Briscoe has done very little racing in his home country.

“I really haven’t done a lot of racing in Australia,” said Briscoe, who took over the No. 6 Team Penske machine this season, earning two victories and three poles en route to a fifth-place finish in the championship. “I started out in go-karts, but moved to Europe at 15 and really raced in Europe and America my whole career. I’ve only done the Champ Car race (in 2006) and a support class race for the Australian Grand Prix in 2002. They’re the only two races I’ve ever done in my own country outside of the junior go-kart level.”

The opportunity to race in Australia affords the 27-year-old an opportunity to see friends and family while away from the track and to get a jump start on the 2009 season on the track.

“It’s going to be good,” Briscoe said. “I’m going to get to spend a couple of days at home before and after the race. I’m going to have some friends and family at the race. I think it’s going to be a good opportunity for us to prepare for the first two races of next year. It’s a street course, the first two races next season are street courses. I’ve got a new engineer, so it’s going to be a real good chance to get a bit of a head start going into ’09.”

The Inside Scoop

Ryan Briscoe on:
The Nikon Indy 300: “It’s a great event. I’ve been there not racing before, and it’s definitely a big party. I’m going to have to be going down there focused on the job, but Sunday night should be fun. The beach is great. When the weather is nice, it’s just a beautiful place, a good time. I’ve only ever gone there as a tourist, but it’s always a good time. People go there to party.”

Sydney: “Sydney is a beautiful city, not just because I’m from there. I think it’s one of the most beautiful cities in the world with Sydney Harbor. It’s clean. You’ve also got trees and greenery throughout the city. It’s just a beautiful place.”

Best Australian Food: “Steak on the barbecue. We like to barbecue. Steak and sausages and grilled onions are right up there.”

Australia’s Gift to the World: “Probably one of their best gifts is Australian beer, but it’s not exported much. You’ve only got Fosters outside of Australia. It’s probably one of the world’s best kept secrets. Vegemite is an easy answer.”

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