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Kanaan gets okay to compete at Kentucky

Tony Kanaan has been cleared by Indy Racing League medical officials to compete in the Meijer Indy 300 Presented by Red Barron and Edy's at Kentucky Speedway this weekend.

Kanaan sustained superficial first degree burns to his face when the fuelling hose remained open after his lap 34 pit stop at Edmonton on Sunday, splashing 100 per cent fuel-grade ethanol onto the side of the #11 Team 7-Eleven car.

The fuel ignited as the car left the pit stall and a second later Kanaan scrambled to extricate himself as Team Penske, Target Chip Ganassi Racing and Panther Racing crew members rushed to douse the car and driver with water to retard the flames.

Kanaan's hands didn't sustain any burns, though they were bandaged as a precaution after the incident. He has a small mark on his chin and left nostril.

"I need to thank the crews of Ganassi and Penske and Panther. It was amazing how quickly they responded and I am glad I'm okay," Kanaan said. "It looked a lot worse on TV than if you saw me right now.

"We have great people working for us, the fire suit, helmet and gloves worked fine and I'm glad nobody was hurt. The burns to my hands turned out to be very minor and far better than we first expected. I'm going to be fine.

"We just have to move on and I'm all set for this weekend now. I'm just looking forward to getting back in the car on Friday and making the most of the weekend at Kentucky.

"The combination of the new aero package and the 'push to pass' button should mix things up a little bit in the race and I'm excited to see what we can do. Hopefully, we'll put on a great show for the fans. They deserve it."

Meanwhile two Andretti Green Racing crew members at the centre of the incident were also evaluated by the Indy Racing League medical staff and cleared to resume activities.

Tagged as: Tony Kaanan

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