CHAMPCAR/CART: Racing movie Driven to coincide with Texas race

"Art Imitates Life Imitates Art" With New Racing Movie Driven FORT WORTH-DALLAS (April 19, 2001) - Race fans will be able to take in racing on both the big screen and in "real life" as the movie Driven opens Friday, April 27, the same weekend of...

"Art Imitates Life Imitates Art" With New Racing Movie Driven

FORT WORTH-DALLAS (April 19, 2001) - Race fans will be able to take in racing on both the big screen and in "real life" as the movie Driven opens Friday, April 27, the same weekend of the Firestone Firehawk 600, presented by Pioneer, at Texas Motor Speedway on Sunday, April 29.

"The timing of these two events is great," said speedway general manager Eddie Gossage. "It's sort of fun that the fans can get a dose of racing excitement from the silver screen and then drive down the road to see the real thing. I think fans will enjoy both events."

The high-tech action drama, starring Sylvester Stallone, Burt Reynolds and Gina Gershon, is based on the CART FedEx Championship Series and features regular drivers from the series, including Mauricio Gugelmin, driver of the #17 Nextel PacWest Toyota and President of the Championship Driver's Association.

"I was fortunate enough to participate in the movie premier activities in Los Angeles, and I also got a chance to see Driven for the first time," said Gugelmin. "I think for those of us in the racing business, there were obviously parts of the film that were a bit over-the-top, but that's the beauty of movies. They can take scenes and make them as dramatic as they want so people will want to see the film again and again. I think the general public will really like this film. There is a lot of action and some very good race scenes which made for some exciting moments.

"It's great to finally see the finished product because I know CART and PacWest spent a lot of time last year lending a hand to Renny (Harlin) and his crew so the film could be as authentic and up-close as possible. There aren't a lot of people who get the chance to see this level of auto racing up close and personal, so for them this movie will really give them a sense of what it takes to be involved in this sport. Hopefully, the movie will strike enough interest in the community to get more people to want to come to the track. It was also interesting to see the level of involvement my team (PacWest Racing Group) played in this film. The PacWest logo was everywhere, and I took great pride in seeing that on film.

"In this business we work around cameras and the media all the time, but to see yourself on the big screen is something special. Someday, when I have grandchildren, I'll be able to pop in a DVD of this movie to show them what I did for a living. Also, the exposure that my sponsor, Nextel, will get out of their participation should pay dividends to them for a long time. Overall I'm happy with the finished product, and I'm sure it will be a great success."

There will be sneak preview screenings on Wednesday evening, April 25 around the Metroplex.

Race tickets for the Firestone Firehawk 600, presented by Pioneer, are available by calling (817) 215-8500, online at www.texasmotorspeedway.com and at Ticketmaster outlets.

-TMS-

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Series Automotive , IndyCar , General
Drivers Mauricio Gugelmin