USAC legend Helmling takes new position

INDIANAPOLIS (Feb. 28, 2008) --Racing industry veteran and businessman Rollie Helmling will join the ranks of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation Monday as the state's new motorsports development director. Helmling, a former team...

INDIANAPOLIS (Feb. 28, 2008) --Racing industry veteran and businessman Rollie Helmling will join the ranks of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation Monday as the state's new motorsports development director.

Helmling, a former team owner for racing legends such as John Andretti, Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart, joins the state's economic development team three months after stepping down from his post as president and chief executive officer of the United States Auto Club (USAC), a position he held since 2001.

"Rollie brings with him decades of motorsports expertise and experience as a business owner," said Nathan Feltman, Secretary of Commerce and chief executive officer of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. "He will play a key role for the developing economic opportunities in the motorsports sector throughout the state."

Prior to serving as president of USAC, Helmling owned cars in USAC's midget car series and silver crown series. The Vincennes native also owned and operated Harold's Supermarkets and CarQuest Auto Parts stores throughout southwestern Indiana.

"After three decades in the industry, I have seen motorsports evolve and know that there are more great possibilities and opportunities out there for Indiana to pursue that can bring new jobs and investment to the state," Helmling said. "I've never worked in government before now. But I know the industry and the people and look forward to working to develop and grow this important segment of Indiana's economy."

Helmling is a graduate of Indiana University and Vincennes University and sits on the board of directors for USAC and the Indiana Motorsports Association.

Indiana is home to more than 1,400 motorsports-specific businesses that employ thousands of Hoosiers in jobs that pay approximately 150 percent of the average median income of Indiana's workforce. Known as the "Motorsports Capital of the World" Indiana is also home to the Indy 500, the Allstate 400 at the Brickyard, NHRA's U.S. Nationals and the new Moto GP. The state is also home to the most racetracks per capita of any state in the United States.

About IEDC
Established under Governor Mitch Daniels in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the Indiana Economic Development Corporation is governed by a 12-member board chaired by Governor Daniels. Indiana Secretary of Commerce Nathan Feltman serves as the chief executive officer of the IEDC. Since the creation of the IEDC, the state has posted three consecutive years of record-breaking commitments for new jobs. For more information about IEDC, visit www.iedc.in.gov.

-credit: usac

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