IRL: Fan may get ultimate thrill ride in 2001

INDIANAPOLIS, Thursday, Oct. 19, 2000 - Fans who purchase tickets for Indy Racing Northern Light Series events in 2001 will see the most exciting, competitive open-wheel racing in the world. But there will be an added incentive to...

INDIANAPOLIS, Thursday, Oct. 19, 2000 - Fans who purchase tickets for Indy Racing Northern Light Series events in 2001 will see the most exciting, competitive open-wheel racing in the world. But there will be an added incentive to purchase tickets next season --a chance to ride in a two-seat, 650-horsepower Indy Racing car at speed with an Indy Racing driver behind the wheel. The Indy Racing Northern Light Series will put fans closer to the action than ever before with the introduction of the Indy Racing Experience at all 13 series events in 2001. Purpose-built, two-seat Indy Racing cars will be the centerpiece of the program, which will start at the season opener March 16-18 at Phoenix International Raceway. "The Indy Racing Experience will put fans into the game unlike anything ever seen before," said Bob Reif, Indy Racing League senior vice president of sales and marketing and chief marketing officer. "We're very excited about this program because it provides a level of accessibility unheard of in any other sport or form of entertainment. "Basketball fans didn't get a chance to shoot free throws with Michael Jordan before every game. Football fans didn't catch passes from Joe Montana during warm-ups. But the Indy Racing Experience will provide fans with this kind of unique, unforgettable feeling." Ticket-purchasing fans can become eligible to win a ride in the two-seat Indy Racing car through sweepstakes and promotions that Indy Racing Marketing will create along with Indy Racing corporate partners and tracks. Indy Racing corporate partners and tracks also will use the Indy Racing Experience as an integral part of their marketing and promotional programs with customers. Media members and celebrities also will be provided with a chance to participate in the Indy Racing Experience. "The Indy Racing Experience is an important part of the Indy Racing League' s strategic marketing program," Reif said. "The promotional possibilities are almost limitless. The Indy Racing Experience is an excellent promotional tool to attract more customers, reward existing customers and increase exposure. It also will enhance the already tremendous entertainment value of the Northern Light Series for our track promoters. "But most of all, it will be an experience of a lifetime." The cars used in the Indy Racing Experience will be purpose-built race cars constructed to meet 2001 Indy Racing League specifications, including all safety equipment. The constructor of the car and other specifications will be announced in the future. Indy Racing drivers will be behind the wheel of each car. Speedway Group, Inc., a Charlotte, N.C.-based company, is the service provider for the Indy Racing Experience. Speedway Group has vast, successful experience with driving schools and ride-and-drive programs for automotive manufacturers. "I can't imagine what it will be like to ride down the front straight at Indianapolis Motor Speedway at near race speeds," said Mike Schriefer, president of Speedway Group. "We are excited for the fans to actually have the opportunity to experience what Indy Racing is all about."

-IRNLS/IMS-

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Series Automotive , IndyCar
Drivers Joe Montana