INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, Dec. 13, 2002 -- Two-time Indy Racing League champion Sam Hornish Jr. and Indy Racing Infiniti Pro Series champion A.J. Foyt IV were named to the first team of the All-America Auto Racing Team selected annually by members of the American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association.
Hornish earned the most votes in the Open Wheel category to claim first-team honors for the second consecutive year. He won his second consecutive IRL title for Pennzoil Panther Racing in 2002, earning a league-record five victories.
Hornish, 22, from Defiance, Ohio, is one of three drivers eligible for the coveted Jerry Titus Award presented to the driver of the year, regardless of category, during the AARWBA awards ceremony Jan. 11 at Pomona, Calif. NASCAR Winston Cup champion Tony Stewart and NHRA Funny Car champion John Force also are nominated for the award, presented to the driver who earned the most votes, regardless of category.
AARWBA members select two drivers each for the first team and second team in six racing categories.
Joining Hornish on the first team in the Open Wheel category is CART champion Cristiano da Matta.
Marlboro Team Penske teammates Helio Castroneves and Gil de Ferran filled the second team in the Open Wheel category. Castroneves won his second consecutive Indianapolis 500 and finished second in the IRL point standings, while de Ferran was third in the standings.
Foyt led the At Large category, filled by drivers from a variety of series. Foyt, 18, from Hockley, Texas, won the inaugural Infiniti Pro Series title in a car owned by his grandfather, four-time Indianapolis 500 winner A.J. Foyt. The younger Foyt is moving to the IRL in 2003.
Two drivers -- drag racer Frank Manzo and road racer Bryan Sellers -- joined Foyt in the At Large category after they tied in the voting.