Ho-Pin Tung has raced numerous cars in numerous countries, but he has finally made his way to IndyCar. What’s more, he’s on his way to making history. He has become the first Chinese racer to enter the Indy 500, and is hoping to be the first Chinese driver to qualify for the race.
Tung is driving for Schmidt Dragon Racing for this year’s Indy 500 and sees this race as a huge learning experience. Drivers such as Arie Luyendyk and Al Unser Jr have inspired and motivated Tung to meet his Indy goals this May. So come out to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and cheer Ho-Pin Tung to his goal of being the first Chinese man to qualify for the Indy 500.
Watch the interview below and listen to everything Ho-Pin Tung has to say about his racing career, IndyCar, and the experience of racing in the Indy 500.
What is your prediction for Ho-Pin Tung’s performance in the Indy 500 this season?
Charlie Kimball – 11 in 11Charlie Kimball has joined the IZOD IndyCar Series for the 2011 season and before he ever turned a lap he was setting records. Having been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 2007, he is the first IZOD IndyCar Series competitor to have driven with the disease.
Charlie uses a complex set of tools and rigid self-discipline to maintain his edge as a competitor. We were lucky enough to catch up with Charlie at Barber Motorsports Park for a few minutes and asked him questions submitted by you, the fans. Sit back, enjoy the video, and get to know one of the young, up and coming stars of the IZOD IndyCar Series.
Fisher was very deserving of the “Risk Taker” award; she took a large leap for women in the field of auto sports when she began her own team- Sarah Fisher Racing in 2008. This season shows her team has done very well. They secured a sponsor, Dollar General, placed 26 out of 41 in the IZOD IndyCar Series and has an incredible fan following! Just check out her Twitter: @SarahFisher67
Fisher appreciated her fans’ support all season- at the Indy 500 her IndyCar had a logo that said “This One is for the Fans.” She also had her fans design her helmet for the title race in Miami-Homestead to benefit the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Fisher even camped out in the “Fan Lot” at the Mid-Ohio Race!
Women and Hi Tech- Leading Lights Award Ceremony
Fisher was extremely grateful for receiving the Risk Taker award and praised the other nominees for their contributions to women and technology. Fisher said, “Without all of you I couldn’t go 220mph!”
What do you think of Sarah Fisher’s achievements? Learn more about Women and Hi Tech by visiting: womenandhitech.org.
With 2 races to go and 5th place in the series getting ever closer the heat was on us to figure out the last scraps of speed in the car on ovals and keep the awesome streak of top 5 finishes going. Kentucky was up and another demanding 1.5 mile flat out oval challenge we had to tackle with both hands.
Qualifying went extremely well. Once I’d gotten over the initial running around a new oval flat out at 190 mph we managed to eek out a pretty decent setup and overall speed to place the car 5th for the race. Things were really looking up as we figured our car’s strongest point wasn’t in outright speed on it’s own, it was better suited for running in traffic in the race. It usually stays strong and helps me bring it home in the top 5.
Not feeling the effects of jetlag from Tokyo to Indianapolis, reigning Indianapolis 500 and IZOD IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti on Sept. 21 had the opportunity to drive two special cars at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
He presented the 2010 Chevrolet Camaro SS Pace Car replica to a sweepstakes winner – giving Bruce Barhydt of North Carolina and his wife a high-speed ride around the track – and got behind the wheel of the Lotus that his racing hero, fellow Scotsman Jim Clark, drive to victory in the 1965 Indianapolis 500. The car was restored last year in Indianapolis.
Franchitti with the Sweepstakes Winners
“I never thought I get to drive that car,” he said.Formula One, Indy 500, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, IMS, Indianapolis 500, “I got to stand next to it one day and that was pretty intense. “It was a lifetime dream to drive that car, and to drive it here at the Speedway was incredible.”
Earlier this month, Franchitti attended the Formula One race weekend at Monza, Italy, and compared the electricity to the Indy 500.
“As a kid I went to Monza when I was about 6 years old,” he said. “My dad was doing some practice in a Formula 3 car. It’s kind of like going to the Speedway when it’s quiet. It’s kind of like being in an empty church.
“Then you go there for the Grand Prix and it’s like going to Indy for the 500. The place was mad and obviously the Ferrari fans were going nuts with (Fernando) Alonso winning. It’s a different atmosphere than IndyCar because the fans don’t get near the paddock. You have this madness and go through these barriers and then it’s quiet all of a sudden. That was quite interesting.”
Now the road courses are over and done with, it’s time for us to knuckle down and figure out this 1.5mile oval car. 190 mph flat out banked oval racing in packs is thrilling stuff and you need to keep your wits about you at all times because everybody will generally stay in a big bunch and constantly be dicing for position. You also need a good car to be fast in clean air and stay flat out in traffic. And that’s what we as a team had to develop.
I’m not pleading poverty though. I’ve probably harped on about the disadvantages we’ve faced as a team from the outset enough already. The reality is I’m more than pleased with what Derrick and his team have provided me with at each race and the chances I’ve had to really race hard against a lot of good drivers and teams. I knew at the beginning of the year the advantages of being with Walker Racing would always far outweigh any disadvantages.
Chicago was a really solid weekend us. Qualifying 11th showed again that some of these Lights teams know something about Qualifying that we don’t. I don’t think it comes down to engineering ability, I know I have a really good engineer, it’s just they’ve ran this car for nearly 10years already and we are new.
Many IZOD IndyCar Series drivers bring their favorite foods with them while on the road, which partly is why you’re more apt to get an autograph/photo while shopping in the organic produce section of Whole Foods than a local hamburger joint.
Such meal plans allow for drivers to eat when they’re hungry, more likely to stick to their diet and consume health-conscious items that they enjoy. For E.J. Viso, one of his favorites is sardines. Check out the video as the KV Racing Technology driver from Venezuela explains.
Rookie: Defined as an untrained or inexperienced recruit.
However, Simona has already shown that she belongs here. Moments before her first laps at IMS, I ran across Simona as she suited up as one of five women in this year’s 500 field. The moment reminded me of my “rookie” season as an IMS photographer just four short four years ago. The nerves, wonderment, and the challenge. It was also a “rookie day” for me with my new lensbaby lens!