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Bridgestone to bring special tires to Homestead finale

The Firestone brand has been involved in numerous racing disciplines in its 100 years of competition. The brand will help spotlight two very different races at the Firestone Indy 300, the climactic event to the 2009 IndyCar Series season Oct. 9-10 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in South Florida.

Special silvery white tire sidewall "Championship Rings" will adorn the cars of Scott Dixon, Dario Franchitti and Ryan Briscoe, making it easier for fans to identify the remaining championship contenders. In addition, Firestone Racing has developed pink sidewall markings for the tires used by Sarah Fisher, who is running an all-pink racecar at Homestead, dedicated to raising awareness and funds for the fight against breast cancer.

This is the second consecutive year that Firestone Racing is providing the specially marked sidewalls for the title-contending teams. Much like the Firehawk red-sidewall alternate tires introduced this season at IndyCar Series road- and street-course events, the Championship Rings feature a bright sidewall coloring easily noticeable from the track grandstands and visible on television. The pink sidewalls for Fisher's entry utilize the same process and are a show of support by Firestone Racing for the worthy cause that will benefit, the Susan G. Komen for the Cure(r).

"We're very excited to bring back the Championship Rings as special visual indicators of the drivers vying for the title," said Al Speyer, Executive Director, Firestone Racing. "We think they'll be helpful to fans once again as Scott, Dario and Ryan battle for top honors at Homestead. Sarah's efforts to aid the 'Komen for the Cure' are highly commendable, and we couldn't be happier about showing Firestone's support with the pink sidewalls. There's no better event we know of to bring these important races together than the Firestone Indy 300."

Fisher, driver/owner of the Sarah Fisher Racing #67 car, is appreciative of Firestone's efforts to support her cause.

"I'm honored Firestone has joined Sarah Fisher Racing in supporting National Breast Cancer Awareness Month," Fisher said. "To have partners that understand the value of working together for the better of a cause is important for the IndyCar Series. Firestone has always been a valuable partner of our team and I greatly appreciate their support with our pink sidewall tires for the race this weekend."

While the tires for Fisher and the championship contenders may look different than those of the other competitors at Homestead, all will feature an identical compound/construction formula - thereby assuring every driver the same reliable footing provided by the Firestone Firehawk racing radials. The tire specification was developed based on race data obtained at other high-banked 1.5-mile ovals this season and a June tire test at Chicagoland Speedway. The Firestone Indy 300 will be the first time that this precise spec will see race weekend use.

"Once again, the championship comes down to the final event, and in all likelihood it could again come down to the last turn of the last lap," said Speyer. "It's one of the many things that make the IndyCar Series so exciting. We know that all the drivers will be pushing themselves and their equipment to the limits, confident in the fact that their Firestone tires will take them where they want to go. We have the same confidence that this new Firehawk tire spec will deliver the great grip and consistency for which they've become famous, and lead to another memorable conclusion to the season."

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