Miller Brands Enter 30th Year In Open Wheel Racing FONTANA, Calif., (Nov. 3, 2001) - The Miller Brewing Company, a major sponsor in open wheel racing for nearly three decades, today announced that it will continue its long-standing relationship...
Miller Brands Enter 30th Year In Open Wheel Racing
FONTANA, Calif., (Nov. 3, 2001) - The Miller Brewing Company, a major sponsor in open wheel racing for nearly three decades, today announced that it will continue its long-standing relationship with CART FedEx Championship Series contenders Team Rahal with a multi-year agreement.
Under the Miller Lite and Miller Genuine Draft brands, Miller Brewing will continue to be on board Team Rahal's open wheel machines during the 2002 season. It will mark the 11th year Miller Brewing has been associated with a Bobby Rahal-owned team.
Team Rahal has enjoyed the finest season in its history in 2001 with six victories, seven pole positions and 789 laps, all new team records for a single season.
"Miller is very happy to continue our great association with Bobby, David and Team Rahal," said Mike Welsh, director of event marketing for Miller. "We have had a tremendous relationship with them for a decade. Team Rahal is one of the top leading operations in all of motorsports and we look forward to working with them again. "
Miller Brewing, which began racing sponsorships on a national basis in 1971, has been involved in all forms of motorsports in 30 years including open-wheel cars, stock cars, drag racing machines, sports cars, hydroplane boats, off-road vehicles and motorcycles.
"Our relationship with Miller Brewing has one of the finest in all of motor racing in this country," said Rahal, the three-time CART champion and a 24-time race winner. "Miller's involvement in this sport is now legendary and we, at Team Rahal, are very pleased to continue our long association with a sports leader like Miller Brewing. I won my last CART championship with Miller Genuine Draft and I drove my last race in the Miller Lite car. I will always be grateful to the Miller folks. David (Letterman, Rahal's co-owner) and I want to thank them for their continued support of Team Rahal."
The 2002 CART FedEx campaign will mark the 30th season that Miller has been a sponsor in open-wheel competition dating back to 1973 in the United States Auto Club (USAC). Since its first involvement, Miller Indy and Championship cars have won 17 races including the 1985 Indianapolis 500 (with Danny Sullivan), 19 pole positions and two CART season championships (with Danny Sullivan in 1988 and Bobby Rahal in 1992). The Indy 500 Pit Stop Contest also was sponsored by Miller for 18 years.
The Miller High Life brand began the open-wheel association in 1973 with Jim Hurtubise and continued with Penske Racing in 1980s. Patrick Racing ran the Miller Genuine Draft colors in 1990 and 1991 followed by Rahal/Hogan Racing in 1992 to 1995. In 1996, Rahal joined forces with entertainer David Letterman to form Team Rahal and began campaigning the Miller Lite livery in 1997. Rahal retired from driving in 1998 and was replaced by Italian Max Papis.
Miller Brewing Company is a wholly owned subsidiary of Philip Morris Companies Inc. Principal beer brands include Miller Lite, Miller Genuine Draft, Miller Genuine Draft Light, Miller High Life, and Milwaukee's Best. Primary products from the Plank Road Brewery, a small division of Miller, include ICEHOUSE and Red Dog. Speciality regional brands include Leinenkugel's Henry Weinhard's, and the company malt liquor brands include Olde English 800 and Mickey's Malt Liquor. Miller also imports Foster's and brews Sharp's, a non-alcohol brew.