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Crown Royal IROC Series Friday Daytona Pit Notes

Daytona Beach, FL (Feb. 6, 2004) The Crown Royal International Race of Champions took to the track Friday for more driver practice and race car testing in preparation for the series' 2004 kickoff event at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, Feb. 13.

Friday was a day of firsts for 2003 IRL IndyCar Champion, Scott Dixon. It was Dixon's first time in a stock car and his initial run on the full 2.5-mile circuit at Daytona. Dixon said, My first experience here at Daytona was last weekend in the 24-hour race, definitely a different experience in the IROC cars. They (IROC cars) move around quite a bit, which is a lot different than what were used to. It was really great to be running out there for the first time with a bunch of other guys to feed off of.

The biggest challenge for an Indy car driver new to stock cars is learning the draft. The technique is nearly the complete opposite of what the Indy car driver is accustomed to, which became instantly apparent to Dixon once he joined the pack. Dixon continued, I was doing really good once I got into the draft. But, once I fell out of the draft, it was hard to get back into it. I think the race will be lot different, or so they're telling me, because with a lot more cars out there you get a bigger suck, which makes it a bit easier. I'm really coming into this with an open mind and hope to have a lot of fun.

Dixon was joined by fellow IndyCar Series driver, Scott Sharp and other open wheel greats, Danny Lasoski, representing the World of Outlaws and 2003 USAC Champion, J. J. Yeley.

NASCAR NEXTEL Cup driver, Jimmie Johnson joined the open wheel contingent for his first round of practice since winning the 2003 series finale at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Johnson said, Its great to get back in the IROC cars and all the open wheel guys are doing a great job out there today. Its going to be an exciting race and exciting season with all these great competitors going for the million-dollar championship.

Crown Royal, America's leading super premium whisky, has a tradition as long and distinctive as its taste. Specially blended to commemorate a grand tour of Canada made by King George VI and Queen Elizabeth of Great Britain in 1939, Crown Royal's smooth, elegant style reflects its aristocratic origins and is considered the epitome of Canadian whisky. In addition to its sponsorship of the Crown Royal IROC Series, the brand also sponsors Team Crown Royal, a professional fishing team; The Crown Royal Comedy Soul Fest and a number of other major regional and national events. For more information on Crown Royal, visit www.crownroyal.com.

About Crown Royal
Crown Royal is proudly owned by Diageo, the world's leading premium drinks business with an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, wines, and beer categories. These brands include: Johnnie Walker, Guinness, Smirnoff, J&B, Baileys, Cuervo, Tanqueray, Captain Morgan, Crown Royal, Beaulieu Vineyard and Sterling Vineyards wines.

Diageo is a global company, trading in more than 200 countries around the world. The company is listed on both the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and the London Stock Exchange (DGE). For more information about Diageo, its people, brands and performance, visit us at www.diageo.com.


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