Al Unser Discusses IndyCar Triple Crown
LONG POND, Pa. – Al Unser, the only driver to win the IndyCar “Triple Crown,” believes Indy 500 champion Tony Kanaan has a chance to capture the coveted $1 million “Fuzzy’s Triple Crown,” the three-race series that includes the Indy 500, Pocono Indy 400 and the MAVTV 500 at Fontana.
Kanaan, the popular Brickyard winner, comes to the fast Pocono International Raceway this Sunday in hopes of recording another victory in his quest for the $1 million prize established by Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka. And Unser, the four-time Indy 500 winner, thinks Kanaan will be very competitive this Sunday in the Pocono Indy 400 fueled by Sunoco.
“Tony is capable of winning at Pocono,” said Unser, a 39-time IndyCar race winner. “He showed he is capable of winning. But there are about 10 other guys there who will be chasing him. If he can win Pocono and California (Auto Club Speedway), I’d be happy to have Tony join me as a Triple Crown winner, for sure.”
Kanaan, a past Michigan 500 winner, knows his chance to win at Pocono is very difficult too, but the personable KV Racing Technology driver was impressive in recent testing at the 2.5-mile tri-oval in the Pocono Mountains. Sunday’s Pocono 400 marks the first time since 1989 the IZOD IndyCar Series has raced at the “Tricky Triangle.”
“I have never raced at Pocono Raceway, but we know we had a good car at Indy and had a good test at Pocono last week,” Kanaan said. “Obviously I’m the only one who has a chance to win the Fuzzy’s Triple Crown, so the pressure is on. Pocono will be the third of four races I will run in the Sunoco ‘Turbo’ car and, after the success we have had in the first two – finishing on the podium at both Texas and Iowa, I really want to keep that momentum going at Pocono and hopefully do even better.”
Unser, whose family (with his brother Bobby and son Al Jr.) has captured an amazing 107 IndyCar Series races from 1965 to 1995, actually won four 500-mile races in a row with an Ontario victory in 1977 and wins in 1978 at Indy, Pocono and Ontario. Unser drove for Parnelli Jones in 1977 and Jim Hall in 1978.