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We hope to excite crowd with side-by-side racing
By Sarah Fisher
Special to ABC Sports Online

Twin Ring Motegi will be our first race outside the United States, and while it seems that this is not the best time to be traveling, I have every confidence that the IRL staff and the Motegi track will make sure we are able to safely do our jobs in Japan.

I was fortunate to be able to visit Twin Ring last November with Sam Hornish, and we both did several days of media interviews, autograph sessions and driving exhibitions -- Sam in his No. 4 car and myself in the IRL two-seater.

Sarah Fisher
Car: No. 23
Team: Dreyer and Reinbold/WeGotGear
Hometown: Commercial Point, Ohio
IRL starts: 34
Best start: 1st (Kentucky, 8/11/02)
Best finish: 2nd (Homestead, 4/8/01)

I don't think being there in the two-seater will give me an advantage over any of the other drivers as it handles totally differently than our IRL Indy cars. I do think that the drivers who have competed at Motegi before will have an advantage over the rest of us -- at least during the first practice session, as we will still be "learning" the new track.

The Japanese fans were so enthusiastic and welcoming when we were there in the fall, it will be interesting to see their reactions when they witness our exciting side-by-side racing. The Motegi track has put a lot of work into us coming here, especially with the resurfacing of the track -- which should make for a very smooth surface for us to drive on.

Most of the drivers and teams are left on Sunday and arrived on Monday afternoon with the 14-hour or so time change, which will give us plenty of time to adjust to the difference by the time we hit the track on Friday. There are a lot of activities for the drivers to do, media and fan-wise before then, so we'll be pretty busy.

Beyond the racing front, I also plan on making time in my schedule to work out every day, and am taking a lot of DVDs to watch since most of the TV stations are in Japanese. And last but not least, I'm looking forward to eating as much fresh sushi as I can handle!

Make sure and mark your calendars to watch our race on a tape-delayed basis on Sunday on ABC (1 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT).

ARIGATO GOZAIMASU (Thank you very much)!

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