(FONTANA, CALIF., Oct. 25, 2000) - Cristiano da Matta and fans at this weekend's 500 race in Fontana will receive an end-of-the-season surprise when they see the shocking new paint scheme created by Pioneer Electronics for its Brazilian driver. Da Matta's number 97, red and white Pioneer Electronics/WorldCom Toyota Reynard will sport a radical new design to end the season with flair.
"Pioneer is known for developing innovative new products that help our customers get maximum enjoyment from their home and car entertainment systems," said Ed Sachs, executive vice president of Pioneer's car electronics division. "We thought we'd harness some of our creativity in a new paint scheme and provide a little extra spark for the last race of the season."
One of the hottest drivers in the 2000 CART racing season, da Matta earned his first CART victory at this year's Target Grand Prix in Chicago. It also was the first CART win for the PPI Motorsports team. The new design uses the traditional green, yellow and blue of the Brazilian flag to represent da Matta's racing heritage. The flag itself will be painted on each side of the engine cover next to the cockpit area, and the front and rear wing will sport a fluorescent yellow paint job to match. Pioneer's "It's Loud in Here" logo, representing the quality and performance of the Company's audio systems, will be seen on the nose cone.
Da Matta's helmet will be painted red and yellow, the same colors as his father's racing helmet. His father, Antonio Lucio da Matta, a legendary race car driver amassed more victories in the '60s, '70s and '80s than any other Brazilian professional race car driver of the time. Race fans will see the car for the first time this weekend at CART's 500 in Fontana.