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Friday, April 18, 2003
More sponsor issues for 2003
By Sarah Fisher
Special to ABC Sports Online
Sarah Fisher is partaking in the Test in the West. Recently, she stepped away from the track to answer some user questions.
After your demonstration laps before the USGP, have you ever considered competing in a non-oval series such as F1, CART or F3000?
--Roberto Reyes, Plantation, Fla.
When Walker Racing and I parted ways at the beginning of last year, I was faced with the decision to stick to my guns about staying dedicated to the IRL or race in CART's Atlantic series. It was clear in my mind what I wanted to do and still is to this day. There will come a time when I will have to race road courses and so be it. Even though I have already competed in a lot of go-karting road course events, which illustrates my background isn't completely void of that experience, I would have to refine those skills to a much higher level.
I know you drove an Infiniti-powered G-Force last year and will be driving a Chevy-powered Dallara this year. Can you describe the differences in the feel and power of these two combinations? Which do you prefer and why?
|Sarah led the first 26 laps of the Belterra Casino 300 last year.|
--John Livengood, Beatty, Nev.
Who really knows what I will be driving at this point! Just because Dreyer and Reinbold racing is committed to a second car, demonstrated by our black/sponsorless carbon car this past week, that doesn't mean the financial support for the program exists. We are doing our best to secure a full team of guys and full funding for the entire year, but that remains the obstacle we have to hurdle. The opportunity I had this past week to drive for Dreyer and Reinbold at the IndyCar's Test in the West let me see that the Dallara has the same great drivability it had in the last three years.
The engines are much harder to compare as there have been changes in the rules package that wouldn't provide equal comparison. Chevy races to win and they will. Their history in the sport of racing supports that fact. There is a strong learning curve on the way there though, as the new engines require different configurations, and we are all still learning what the perfect match could be.
Do you know of any other young women drivers who may be joining you at this level of racing?
--Joe Golden, Spring, Texas
Not that I am aware. But everyone should remember that I popped out of the cornfields, so I am sure with the increasing number of female drivers, others in the future will also be in the right place at the right time.
How much encouragement and respect did the other drivers show you while doing some "real racing" up front?
--Alan Dresser, Chicago
Quite a lot. The IRL IndyCar series is a tight community and to have only been here for three years, I have blended in nicely.
What are your goals for the upcoming season?
Steven, Middletown, Ohio
Obviously the first goal is to be able to hit the track every race. Right now, that is questionable. However, I am extremely fortunate to have Mark Weida returning as my engineer and Robbie Buhl as a great teammate who is already getting up to speed. So, with the combination of those two, I will be better off approaching the first race then I ever have been. This combination is more exciting to me then any other opportunity in racing I have ever had.
What kinds of things does the extra money buy you when you are on a well-funded team?
I hope we discover that this year! Testing days, spare parts, the ability not to budget things out that are required to win and the list goes on …
I have heard you have a sponsor lined up, but have not heard who it is. Is this true, and if it is, who is it and will the money be there to fund more testing time? I think testing is key to taking you from very promising to a top contender on a weekly basis. Good luck and rip 'em a new one this year.
Scott Dinkel, Indianapolis
I couldn't agree with you more about testing time. No, we don't have a sponsor "lined up." There are many proposals floating out there, but none that are signed yet.
Please describe your drive in the F1 car at Indy last year. How did it differ from your Indy Car? Also, please update your online diary more often this season.
--Dave Carty, El Dorado, Ark.
With only three laps total in an F1 car, I couldn't get down and dirty with details. But I would say that in general, the F1 car is more radical and aggressive in all areas, from throttle to steering to responsive feedback.
As far as updating the diary we update as much as humanly possible with everything else that is going on! You should also check out my new and improved personal website, which will shortly be full of new and exciting things at www.sarahfisher.com.
I'm very impressed that you are attending school and racing so competitively at the same time. Will it benefit you greatly once you graduate and can just concentrate on racing?
--Andy Berger, Mokena, Ill.
I was impressed too, but I can't do it any longer. School deserves more attention then I have time to give it. It's not fair to allow myself to memorize the material for a day to pass a test and not learn it. Therefore, I am putting school on hold until I am finished racing. At that point, I will not have to lessen the goals of what I want to accomplish with schooling and be able to focus 100 percent on whatever degree I wish to pursue at that time.
As far as I can tell, weight rules apply to the car only and not the driver or a combination of the two. Does this give you an advantage? Also, how do you answer critics who question your stamina?
Dan Ensch, Reeds Spring, Mo.
It doesn't give me as great of an advantage as people think as I am heavier then I look and we all know muscle weighs more than fat. So, with that in mind, I don't let myself listen to what a few critics may say about stamina, because I know and my peers know that that is not an issue.
Ask Sarah a question: