Kanaan cleared fit to race

Tony Kanaan has been cleared to race in this weekend's Michigan 500 following a brief test on Thursday at the superspeedway

Kanaan cleared fit to race

The Brazilan, who badly broke his left arm and four ribs in Detroit last month, has spent the last week in Indianapolis completing over 700 laps in a go-kart under supervision from Dr Terry Trammel.

Kanaan completed six laps of the 2-mile track on Thursday morning, quickly reaching a top speed of 223mph in his Mo Nunn Racing Reynard-Mercedes.

"I feel absolutely great," said Kanaan on Thursday. "This is a wonderful feeling to be back in my race car. I tried not to get all excited about coming back.

"Last night, I went to bed at a normal hour, and I woke up this morning as if it was going to be just another day at the office. But when they strapped me into the car and fired up the motor, chills ran up and down my spine.

"It seemed like it didn't take long to get up to speed," he continued. "The car felt great. I never really stood on the gas. That wasn't the purpose of this run. I just wanted to make sure the arm and the ribs felt fine.

"My car here requires only a fraction of the steering input that my go-kart needs, so this was really a piece of cake. If we were racing on a road course this weekend, I don't think there's any way I could have raced. Thank goodness for the scheduling.

"I'm really looking forward to doing it for real this weekend. I just want to thank all the people who took such good care of me. I owe a lot to them. I hope I can go out this weekend and begin to pay them back with a strong finish."

Kanaan scored his first CART victory at Michigan last year, when he passed an out-of-fuel Max Papis on the final lap.

Team boss Mo Nunn said: "Tony's made an amazing comeback after that terrible accident. I think he's all the wiser for it, and without question he's in better shape now than he was before the accident. He's been working out night and day since he got his clearance to do so. Now, we start the second half of the season with a clean slate."

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