IRL: Dura-Lube 200 - PIR Fast Facts
13 March 1998WHAT: DURA-LUBE 200
Second of 11 races in the 1998 Pep Boys Indy Racing League
WHERE: Phoenix International Raceway
1-mile paved oval
WHEN: 2 p.m. (MST) Sunday, March 22, 1998
DISTANCE: 200 miles/200 laps
POSTED AWARDS: $1.1 million
CARS: Dallara, G Force and Riley & Scott chassis; Oldsmobile Aurora V8 and Nissan Infiniti Indy V8 engines; Firestone and Goodyear tires
FIELD: 28 cars. Fastest 26 cars through time trials, plus two provisional starting positions
WINNER: Jim Guthrie
IRL CHAMPION: Tony Stewart
CURRENT POINTS LEADER: Tony Stewart
(Race) ABC (live), 4 p.m. (EST) March 22 Announcers: Paul Page, Tom Sneva Pit reporters: Jack Arute, Gary Gerould
(Qualifying) ABC "Wide World of Sports" (highlights), 5:30 p.m. (EST) March 21 Announcers: Paul Page, Tom Sneva Pit reporters: Jack Arute, Gary Gerould
Speedvision (live), 2 p.m. (EST) March 21 Announcers: Gary Lee, Derek Daly Pit reporter: Calvin Fish
RADIO: (Race) IMS Radio Network (live), 3:30 p.m. (EST) March 22 Announcers: Gary Lee, Larry Rice Pit Reporters: Mike Joy, Mark Jaynes
(Qualifying) IMS Radio Network (highlights), 5:30 p.m. (EST) March 21 Announcers: Gary Lee, Larry Rice Pit Reporters: Mike Joy, Mark Jaynes
SCHEDULE: (March 20) 8 a.m.: Gates open to public 9-9:40 a.m.: STAR Formula Mazda practice 9:45-10:25 a.m.: U.S. F2000 practice 10:30 a.m.-12:35 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL practice (two one-hour split sessions) 1-1:25 p.m.: STAR Formula Mazda practice 1:30-1:55 p.m.: U.S. F2000 qualifying 2-2:40 p.m.: STAR Formula Mazda qualifying 3-4:35 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL practice (two 45-minute split sessions)
(March 21, 8 a.m.: Gates open to public Oldsmobile 8:20-8:45 a.m.: STAR Formula Mazda practice Pole Day) 8:50-10:25 a.m.: Pep Boys IRL practice (two 45-minute split sessions) 10:30-11:45 a.m.: U..S. F2000 qualifying (top 20 positions set) Noon-2 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL qualifying 2:30-3:15 p.m.: STAR Formula Mazda race (50 miles/50 laps) 3:30-4 p.m.: U.S. F2000 last chance race (20 laps, positions 21-34) 4:15-4:45 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL practice (all 28 qualified cars) 5-6:30 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL autograph session (garage area)
(March 22) 8 a.m.: Gates open to public 10:45-11 a.m.: U.S. F2000 warmup 11:30 a.m.-noon: On-track/pre-race festivities Noon-1 p.m.: U.S. F2000 race (50 miles/50 laps) 1-2 p.m.: On-track/pre-race festivities 2 p.m.: Pep Boys IRL Dura-Lube 200 race (200 miles/200 laps)
IRL TRACK RECORDS: (Qualifying) Arie Luyendyk, 19.608 seconds, 183.599 mph, March 23, 1996 (using old engine/chassis formula)
Tony Stewart, 21.176 seconds, 170.012 mph, March 22, 1997 (using new engine/chassis formula)
(Race) Arie Luyendyk, 1 hour, 42 minutes, 14 seconds, March 24, 1996.
Average speed: 117.368 mph (using old engine/chassis formula)
Jim Guthrie, 2 hours, 14 minutes, 32 seconds, March 23, 1997 Average speed: 89.190 mph (using new engine/chassis formula)
THE TRACK: 1-mile paved oval Width: 56-71 feet Front straightaway: 1,179 feet long Back straightaway: 1,551 feet long Banking: Turns 1-2: 11 degrees Turns 3-4: 9 degrees Facility opened in 1964
THE RACE: This Pep Boys IRL event has taken place annually at Phoenix International Raceway since 1996. Arie Luyendyk won in 1996, Jim Guthrie in 1997. Luyendyk sat on the pole in 1996, Tony Stewart in 1997.
RACE NOTES: Defending race champion Jim Guthrie, who pulled off a stunning upset last year as a rookie driving for low-budget Blueprint Racing, has moved this season to ISM Racing as a teammate to 1997 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year Jeff Ward. The victory at Phoenix helped propel Guthrie to Indy Racing League Rookie of the Year honors. Guthrie failed to qualify for this season's opener, the Indy 200 in late January at Walt Disney World Speedway near Orlando, Fla. Cars were placed on the grid according to 1997 owners' points after qualifying was canceled due to rain.
1996 Dura-Lube 200 winner Arie Luyendyk is the only entrant this year to have won two Indy-style races at Phoenix International Raceway. Luyendyk also won an Indy-style race in 1991 at PIR. Luyendyk leads this year's entrants in miles completed (1,833) and laps led (287) at PIR in an Indy-style car.
This event has been a classic case of feast-or-famine for Arie Luyendyk. He won in 1996 and finished last in a field of 22 in 1997, dropping out after only 11 laps due to mechanical problems.
USAC standouts Dave Steele and J.J. Yeley will make their Pep Boys IRL debuts at this event. Steele will drive for the new rsm Marko team, while Yeley will drive as a teammate to Dr. Jack Miller for the SRS team. Steele holds the track speed records for USAC Silver Crown and sprint cars.
Pep Boys IRL standouts Tony Stewart, Davey Hamilton and Jimmy Kite never have won the Dura-Lube 200, but they're no strangers to victory at PIR. Stewart has won three times during the Skoal Bandit Racing Copper World Classic, including victories in the Silver Crown and midget features in February 1998, the first time a driver has won two divisions in one day in the Copper World. Hamilton has won four supermodified features in the Copper World, and Kite stormed to victory in the Silver Crown feature in the 1997 Copper World Classic.
Three Arizona residents are entered in this event: Arie Luyendyk, from Scottsdale; Billy Boat, from Phoenix; J.J. Yeley, from Phoenix.
Phoenix International Raceway is one of the most competitive tracks in Indy-style racing. There have been 13 different winners in the last 17 Indy-style races at the track, with 11 track records set during qualifying.
SERIES NOTES: Thirty-one cars entered the field at the season-opening Indy 200 in late January at Walt Disney World Speedway near Orlando, Fla., a 28-car event. It was the first event in IRL history other than the Indianapolis 500 in which entries exceeded available starting spots. That growth pattern will continue at the Dura-Lube 200, as 33 entrants will compete for 28 starting spots.
Qualifying highlights from this event will be televised on ABC at 5:30 p.m. (EST) March 21, the first time that qualifying from a Pep Boys IRL event other than the Indianapolis 500 has been shown on network television.
STATISTICS: 1998 Pep Boys IRL point standings: 1998 Pep Boys IRL lap leaders 1. Tony Stewart 52 1. Tony Stewart 132 2. Jeff Ward 40 2. Buddy Lazier 34 3. Davey Hamilton 35 3. Mark Dismore 27 4. Stephan Gregoire 32 4. Roberto Guerrero 6 5. Mark Dismore 30 5. Kenny Brack 1 6. Scott Sharp 28 7. Mike Groff 26 1998 Pep Boys IRL winners 8. Arie Luyendyk 24 1. Tony Stewart 1 9. Sam Schmidt 22 10. John Paul Jr. 20 1998 Pep Boys IRL poles 1. Tony Stewart 1
1998 Pep Boys IRL money leaders 1998 wins by chassis 1. Tony Stewart $121,150 1. G Force 1 2. Davey Hamilton $76,750 3. Jeff Ward $60,550 1998 wins by engine 4. Stephan Gregoire $54,350 1. Aurora 1 5. Mike Groff $43,700 1998 wins by tire 1. Firestone 1