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Ho-Pin Tung to make IndyCar debut at Sears Point

Ho-Pin Tung Dragon Racing IndyCar Indianapolis 500 2011

Ho-Pin Tung will become the first Chinese driver to start an IndyCar Series race when he makes his debut in the championship at Sears Point this weekend.

A deal has been struck between Sam Schmidt Motorsports and Dragon boss Jay Penske to field the Renault Formula 1 test driver under the Schmidt Dragon Racing banner at the California road course.

Tung, 28, had hoped to make his IndyCar debut in a Dragon car at the Indianapolis 500 in May, but was concussed in a crash on Pole Day and failed to make the starting line-up.

But after testing the Schmidt Dragon car at Sears last week, he is confident of a much better showing this time around.

"The track is very technical, with many differences in height, really challenging," Tung said. "This circuit requires an intelligent approach. I am very excited about the chance being offered to race."

Team owner Sam Schmidt added: "Our team is pleased to have been able to facilitate this program for Ho-Pin Tung that gives him another shot in 2011,"

"He was the model of consistency at Indy. It was a shame he couldn't compete in that event, but we are thrilled to be partnering with Dragon Racing to make this happen."

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