Hornish Heats Up California

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Sam Hornish Jr. knows the importance of testing, but he’d much rather race.

Hornish, the reigning Indy Racing League champion, tested his No. 4 Dallara-Chevy at California Speedway this week, but he was a bit lonely on the 2-mile high-speed oval.

“I can't wait to get more people on the track instead of one car going around, but this track should provide for good racing,” Hornish said.

Panther Racing engineer Andy Brown estimated that Hornish reached 224 mph in his two-day test Jan. 21 and 22.

“We are trying to figure out how fast we can go around here,” Hornish said. “For the last day and a half, we've been going the same speed. We are just working on trying to go faster. The track is fun to drive, and the car is handling good.”

Hornish toured the Fontana, Calif., oval in a 2002-spec Dallara. It was the first test for the new chassis. Brown said one of the chassis’ biggest changes is a new rear-wing endplate designed to control speeds.

Hornish and about 20 of his competitors will return to California Speedway on Feb. 6 for the annual Test in the West.

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