IRL: Gleason promotes SSPF with special limited print

Fans can receive Racing Print with donation of $25 or more to the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation. INDIANAPOLIS, Aug. 7 - Race fans can help a great cause and also receive a limited-edition racing print of a painting by famed motorsports...

Fans can receive Racing Print with donation of $25 or more to the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation.

INDIANAPOLIS, Aug. 7 - Race fans can help a great cause and also receive a limited-edition racing print of a painting by famed motorsports artist Randy Owens thanks to the generosity of endurance sports car racer Chris Gleason of Johnstown, Pa.

For every donation of $25 or more made to the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation accompanied by the word "print" in the memo portion of the check or money order, fans will receive a full-color, 19-by 28-inch print suitable for framing, while supplies last. The print is a copy of an original painting Gleason commissioned Owens to do of the Lola Nissan that Gleason drove in last June's 24 Hours of Le Mans in France.

Gleason also graciously arranged to have the foundation's logo displayed prominently on the car, giving the 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization its first presence overseas. He also promoted the foundation at Le Mans through signage in the garage area and pits and information on the team's autograph cards.

"Randy did a great job and captured the horrible conditions we were running under," Gleason said. "Last year it rained for most of the race, which made it even more challenging. There is nothing in the world quite like the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and we're glad to help Sam and the foundation as much as we can."

Gleason and the Roock/Knight-Hawk team and his co-drivers, Rick Fairbanks of Greenville, S.C. and Claudia Huertgen of Aachen, Germany, finished fourth in the LMP675 class in the race, just one lap out of a podium finish.

Gleason, who is president and chief executive officer of Gleason Financial Ltd., a leading, independently-owned property and casualty insurance broker headquartered in Johnstown, Pa., is very active in various charitable and civic groups to help the disabled.

"Ever since the day of my accident, I have been astonished by the support from within the motorsports community," said Schmidt. "This is just another example of how everyone in racing is part of a family. I didn't know Chris prior to the accident; however, his encouragement and generosity towards myself and the foundation have been fantastic. This opportunity is the bargain of a lifetime. I want to thank Chris for this unique donation and I urge every fan of motorsports to purchase at least one. I guarantee you'll be satisfied with the exceptional quality of this print."

The Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation was founded by Schmidt after he sustained a serious spinal cord injury during an Indy car practice session in January 2000. The foundation's mission is to help individuals overcome spinal cord injuries and other debilitating illnesses by facilitating scientific research, medical treatment, rehabilitation and technology advances. The foundation raises funds to improve individuals' quality of life and ensure best-possible outcomes by touching individual lives. Its goal is to find a permanent cure for those afflicted with chronic and long-term paralysis.

Donations may be mailed to: The Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation, 411 Dorman St., Indianapolis, Ind. 46202-3647. Please allow several weeks for delivery of the print.

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Series CHARITY , INDYCAR , LEMANS