AKRON-Firestone Firehawks are on a roll. Bridgestone/Firestone Inc.'s premier racing tire swept the Memorial Day weekend Indy car races
with victories at Indianapolis and Brooklyn, Mich.
The victories at that time gave the Firestone-brand tires an 8-1 record, which Goodyear has since made 8-2 with a win at Milwaukee, June 2.
``This is a very proud moment for our company,'' said Al Speyer, Bridgestone/Firestone motorsports manager. ``Winning at Indy and Michigan is a testament to the dedication, hard work and total commitment by everyone in our organization.''
In the Indianapolis 500, which is on the Indy Racing League circuit, Buddy Lazier's Firehawk-shod car ran away from the field on the final lap to post the win.
The win was Firestone's 49th at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and came in the company's second try following a 21-year absence from the sport.
The outcome also ended Goodyear's 25-year victory streak at the speedway.
Mr. Lazier's triumph capped a strong-and at times mournful-May showing for Firestone at Indy.
Scott Brayton rode Firehawks to the pole position
but was killed in a crash during practice after one of his tires hit a foreign object and deflated.
Tony Stewart, Mr. Brayton's Team Menard teammate, then went to the pole on Firestone tires. In addition, Arie Luyendyk also set one- and four-lap speed records at the track on Firestones.
In the inaugural U.S. 500 in Michigan, which is on the PPG IndyCar World Series circuit, Target/Chip Ganassi Racing's Jimmy Vasser won the pole position and the race while riding on Firestone Firehawks. The win was Mr. Vasser's fourth in six races this season.
May 26 wasn't a bust for Goodyear. The Akron-based tire company produced tires on six of the top 10 cars-including five of the top six-at Indianapolis and seven of the top 10 finishers at Brooklyn.