SARAH FISHER, GREG RAY READY TO RACE THE "BELTERRA CASINO INDY 300" Car Set Up To Play An Important Role At Kentucky
Indy Racing Northern Light Series Drivers Sarah Fisher and Greg Ray were in Cincinnati today to meet fans and give them a preview of Sunday's "Belterra Casino Indy 300."
Indy Racing Northern Light Series driver Sarah Fisher signed fan autographs at Procter & Gamble Gardens downtown while circuit mate Greg Ray lent his sports wisdom to 700 WLW AM's daily "Sports or Consequences" segment and threw the ceremonial first pitch at Cinergy Field prior to the Cincinnati Reds match up with the San Francisco Giants.
Fisher placed third in last season's race and has found success again this season. She posted a career-best second place finish at Miami and started a career-best second at Richmond. She enters Sunday's race fourteenth in the point standings and seven points behind the tenth-place Jeff Ward.
The 20-year-old said recent testing opportunities, a Walker Racing team that's beginning to gel and quality racing conditions at Kentucky will aid her chances of adding another podium finish to her racing resume.
"I think we have a good chance of finishing well, my goal is definitely a podium finish. I think every track you go to, you try to improve and get better. We've had a good opportunity with Kroger, Gain and Procter & Gamble to test Kentucky this year and that will definitely contribute to a good successful weekend for us."
Walker's recent tests also helped her team enhance its internal performance. "When you change people, you change employees you have to learn the way they go about things and we both as a side have to change the way that you do things a little beat to meet each others needs. With the last couple of tests we've had we've been able to do that."
Fisher also cited Kentucky's commitment to providing quality racing conditions as another factor contributing to her potential success. "Kentucky Speedway has worked hard to improve the conditions that they have. The conditions they had weren't a big negative," she said. "Indy car drivers are very peculiar and picky about the surfaces we run on because our ground clearance is so minimal. Even the slightest little bump is going to upset our car so we're very picky. Even the littlest bump we'll point out, trying to make the perfect racetrack. Kentucky Speedway has done a wonderful job trying to suit our needs."
Ray, who enters the race twelfth in point standings and two behind Ward, said car set up will play an important role at Kentucky this Sunday.
"Track conditions have changed since the last time we've been here and that will be a challenge for all the race teams," Ray said. "This isn't a regulation sport like basketball where the floor is the same in L.A. as it is in Boston. Even though it's (the track) different, it's a challenge and it's tough, but it the same for all the teams. We may come in with a different game plan and a different set up, but the team that makes the right compromises will be successful. And that's what it is, a series of compromises."
He's confident Team Menards' ability to find a winning formula. "We've been competitive this season in some events and there have been some events where we have not been competitive. We've made approach changes to get a better handle on the racecar. We have a great team and a great car."