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INDYJuly 6, 2003
American IndyCar Series Round 8
Kansas Speedway

First Indy Victory for Bryan Herta
Tony Kanaan Takes 4th, Extends Series Lead to 31

Honda Indy V-8 driver Bryan Herta put on a sparkling display to earn his first ever Indy Series victory in the last race of the first half of the season. The location was Kansas State, the "heartland", almost exactly in the center of the North American continent and about 1,000 miles west of Richmond, Virginia where Round 7 was held. Driving the No.27 Dallara Honda in place of Dario Franchitti, ruled out of the rest of the season due to injury, Herta won in his second race since obtaining a regular seat. Championship leader Tony Kanaan finished 4th to extend his series lead to 31 points.

The 1.5-mile, D-shaped oval Kansas Speedway was only recently completed in 2001, and its big banked corners of 15 degrees produced a very fast race. 11th in qualifying, Herta began to drive carefully to conserve fuel after his second pit stop. His third pit stop was on lap 139, after which he continued to save fuel while maintaining a very high speed, completing the last 61 laps without refueling. There was a considerable gap of 7.3264 seconds between him and second-placed Helio Castroneves at the checkered flag.

There were three Honda Indy V8 drivers in the top five with Kanaan finishing fourth and Kenny Brack taking fifth. Rookie Roger Yasugawa scored seventh, a personal best, after qualifying in 14th place while Greg Ray clinched eighth. Although Dan Weldon had to retire after a crash, still five out of the six Honda Indy V8 entrants finished in the top eight. Kanaan, who has led the standings since round two at Phoenix, got a further 32 points from his fourth place, which meant he didn't just maintain his grip on the series but actually increased his lead from 27 to 31 points.

Indy Series champion two years in succession Sam Hornish Jr. improved from 18th in qualifying to fourth until electrical trouble forced him to retire. Meanwhile, woman driver Sara Fisher was four laps behind the winner but still finished in 11th place. Tora Takagi, third in qualifying, had to pull out of the race after losing fuel pressure.


American IndyCar Series Round 8
Kansas Speedway


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1 Bryan Herta (Andretti Green Racing)
2 Helio Castroneves (Marlboro Team Penske)
3 Gil de Ferran (Marlboro Team Penske)
4 Tony Kanaan (Andretti Green Racing)
5 Kenny Brack (Team Rahal)
6 Scott Dixon (Target Chip Ganassi Racing)
7 Roger Yasukawa (Super Aguri Fernandez Racing)
8 Greg Ray (Access Motorsports)
9 Tomas Scheckter (Target Chip Ganassi Racing)
10 Jaques Lazier (A.J. Foyt Enterprises)
21 Dan Wheldon (Andretti Green Racing)
B.Herta
B.Herta
ICS


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