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Foyt feels healthy, plans to attend every IndyCar race

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) Four-time Indianapolis 500 winner A.J. Foyt hopes to attend every IndyCar Series race this season.

And he feels healthy enough to make it happen.

The 81-year-old Foyt was at Daytona International Speedway on Friday to take part in a ceremony to open the renovated track’s center fan entrance. Foyt, NASCAR driver Jamie McMurray and other past champions donated a piece of motorsports history to display in the fan “injector” during Speedweeks.

Foyt donated a Copenhagen driver’s suit. But just being at Daytona – and moving around without assistance – was huge progress for Foyt.

“I’m feeling good,” said Foyt, who had a triple bypass procedure in November 2014 and knee replacement surgery last September. “I kind of stagger a little bit and I’m just now getting to where I can walk again and out of the wheelchair and the walker.

“I made up my mind I wasn’t going to walk with no cane. Every now and then, after I’ve been sitting down, I kind of look like I’m drunk. You don’t realize at 81 years old you’ve got to learn to walk again. Who would have ever told me that, I would have told you you’re crazy. I’m getting there. Every day is a better day for me.”

Foyt missed the first five IndyCar races of 2015 following heart surgery. He missed the final two following knee surgery.

He hopes to make them all this year. Foyt Racing fields IndyCar entries for Takuma Sato and Jack Hawksworth. Foyt said he expects to field a third car for the Indy 500.

“I hope to go to all of them. I’m planning on it,” he said. “Now, how we’re going to go? That’s something nobody can figure out today.”

As for the Indy 500 in May, the 100th running of the series’ premier event, Foyt has high expectations.

“I hope we win it. We made a lot of changes,” he said. “I think we’ll run pretty good.”

Keating stripped of Le Mans GTE-Am win; No. 68 Ganassi entry also disqualified

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FIA stewards announced Monday that two Ford GT entries have been disqualified from this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans, including the GTE-Am class-winning No. 85 entry from privateer Keating Motorsports.

Also DQ’d was the factory No. 68 Chip Ganassi Racing entry of Joey Hand, Dirk Mueller and Sebastien Bourdais, which initially finished fourth in the GTE-Pro class.

Both entries were found in violation of fuel capacity regulations, with the No. 85 entry also failing to meet the minimum refueling time during pit stops.

The refueling system on the No. 85 entry, driven by Ben Keating, Jeroen Bleekemolen and Felipe Fraga, measured a time of 44.4 seconds during a stop, just shy of the minimum required time of 45 seconds.

As a result, the team was initially issued a 55.2-second post-race penalty by officials, which elevated the No. 56 Team Project 1 Porsche 911 RSR of Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Lindsey, and Egidio Perfetti to the class win.

The time penalty was calculated by the difference in the refueling time (0.6 seconds) multiplied by the amount of pit stops made by the team (23), then multiplied by four.

The No. 85 entry was set to finish second in class, but then received an outright DQ after its fuel capacity was also revealed to be 0.1 liters above the maximum permitted capacity of 96 liters.

As for Ganassi’s No. 68 entry, it was found to have a fuel capacity of 97.83 liters, which is above the maximum allowed capacity of 97 liters for the GTE-Pro Fords.

The No. 67 Ford of Andy Priaulx, Harry Tincknell, and Jonathan Bomarito subsequently moves up to fourth, and the No. 69 Ford of Scott Dixon, Ryan Briscoe and Richard Westbrook moves up to fifth.

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