Danica Patrick says she is hopeful of finishing her 2008 IndyCar Series campaign with a strong result as the season draws to a close this weekend at Surfers Paradise.

The Nikon Indy 300 will run as a non-championship event and will be the first race on Australian soil for the unified open-wheel series after the merger of Champ Car and IndyCar at the start of the year.

Patrick, who took her maiden IndyCar win earlier this year at Motegi, is set to one of the big draws of the weekend on the Gold Coast and said she hoped to make the most of her improving road course performances to fight for honours.

"I'm really looking forward to racing in Australia," she said. "I have heard that it is a great road course. I have improved on my road course races over the past couple of years, so I hope to have a strong result.

"But most importantly, I plan to use this weekend as momentum for the first race of 2009 in St. Petersburg."

Rookie AGR team-mate Hideki Mutoh will bring the curtain down on his maiden season in IndyCar competition in the event and he said he was chasing a strong result to begin his 2009 plans.

"I am very excited to race on the streets of Surfers Paradise," he said. "It will be my first time racing in Australia and it is the last race for 2008.

"This is going be a great race for the fans because it will give a look into 2009 with the new driver and team combinations entered in this race. I am looking for a good result for the Formula Dream team to carry us into next season."



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