KATHERINE LEGGE'S LONG BEACH ATLANTIC WIN NOMINATED AS ONE OF THE TOP SPORTS MOMENTS OF THE YEAR IN LOS ANGELES INDIANAPOLIS (November 14, 2005) -- Not only was rookie racer Katherine Legge's dramatic victory at Long Beach one of the ...
KATHERINE LEGGE'S LONG BEACH ATLANTIC WIN NOMINATED AS ONE OF THE TOP SPORTS MOMENTS OF THE YEAR IN LOS ANGELES
INDIANAPOLIS (November 14, 2005) -- Not only was rookie racer Katherine Legge's dramatic victory at Long Beach one of the top moments in the 2005 Toyota Atlantic Championship Presented by Yokohama, it has also been recognized as one of the top sports achievements of the year in Southern California.
Legge re-wrote the history books on April 10 when she rallied from a seventh-place starting spot to claim the lead three laps from the end of the Atlantic season-opening race, before holding on for a nail-biting, half-second victory over her Polestar Racing Group teammate Antoine Bessette. The performance on the streets of Long Beach represented the first-ever win for a woman in a North American major open-wheel race. It also marked the first time in three years that a rookie won in their first race in the Atlantic series.
Recognizing the historical significance and the brilliance of Legge's drive to Victory Lane, the Los Angeles Sports Council has recognized the win as one of the top sports moments of 2005. The council has nominated Legge's victory as one of three finalists in the Auto Racing category for its upcoming fan voting on the greatest moments of the year in sports for the Los Angeles/Orange County area.
Voting for the LA sports awards begins online Tuesday, November 15 and concludes on Monday, December 5. Fans are encouraged to log on and cast their votes for the top moments in 16 different sports categories through the council's web site, www.lasports.org at the "Greatest Moments" link. A special link to the web site will also be posted at www.champcaratlantic.com to encourage Atlantic racing fans to cast their ballot.
The winners of each category will be announced on Sunday, December 11 during the LA Sports Council's star-studded award show from the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel, aired live on KCAL-TV in Los Angeles. A blue-ribbon media panel will rank the top 10 overall sports moments of the year and will select the Sportsman, Sportswoman, and Sports Executive of the Year, which will also be awarded at the celebration.
Legge, the 25-year-old native of Northampton, England, completed a remarkable first season in Atlantics by placing third in the series championship standings. She scored two other victories on the year after the win at Long Beach and she recently earned Honorable Mention recognition on the prestigious American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association (AARWBA) All-American team.
The Champ Car Atlantic Championship continues to be the premier open-wheel development series in North America. The championship is noted for its long history of graduating its stars into Champ Car competition and has helped produce past Champ Car champions Paul Tracy, Jimmy Vasser, Bobby Rahal, Danny Sullivan, Michael Andretti and Jacques Villeneuve. Current Champ Car competitors Alex Tagliani, Andrew Ranger and Ronnie Bremer are also established Atlantic graduates along with 2004 Champ Car Rookie of the Year and 2003 Atlantic champ A.J. Allmendinger. In 2006, competitors will fight for the 12-race championship and the unique $2 million Champ Car series champion's bonus. For more information on the Atlantic series, please visit www.champcaratlantic.com.