IPS: IRL: Indy Racing League News and Notes 2005-10-06

INDY RACING LEAGUE NEWS AND NOTES -- Oct. 6, 2005 Today's IRL headlines 1. IRL Championship Celebration To Take Place At Paramount Studios In Hollywood 2. Marlboro Team Penske adds to contribution for hurricane relief effort: 3. Castroneves ...

INDY RACING LEAGUE NEWS AND NOTES -- Oct. 6, 2005

Today's IRL headlines
1. IRL Championship Celebration To Take Place At Paramount Studios In Hollywood
2. Marlboro Team Penske adds to contribution for hurricane relief effort:
3. Castroneves honored in hometown
4. Wheldon sees his silver

1. IRL Championship Celebration To Take Place At Paramount Studios In Hollywood: The stars of the IRL IndyCar® Series and Menards Infiniti Pro Series will travel to Hollywood on Oct. 17 for the annual Indy Racing League Championship Celebration, league officials announced.

The event will take place at the state-of-the-art Paramount Theatre, located on the grounds of Paramount Pictures Studio, and will be hosted by Emmy-award-winning comedian Dennis Miller.

Miller, the host of CNBC's "Dennis Miller," is a five-time Emmy-award winner for his critically acclaimed half-hour live talk show "Dennis Miller Live." Miller joined Al Michaels and NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Fouts on ABC's "Monday Night Football," and also was the "Weekend Update" correspondent on "Saturday Night Live" for six years. He also has been cast in films, usually in dramatic roles, most notably in 1994's "Disclosure," 1995's "The Net" and 1996's "Murder at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue."

"Paramount Pictures is a unique venue in which our teams and sponsors can celebrate the 2005 season," said Brian Barnhart, Indy Racing League president and COO. "Everyone that travels with the league deserves time at the end of the season to get away from work, enjoy great company and reflect on the season. Traveling to different destinations each year to honor our champion is a unique way to celebrate the season. I have no doubt that Hollywood will make for one of the more memorable stops for the celebration."

Hollywood is the sixth city the Indy Racing League Championship Celebration has visited since 2000, when the champion was crowned at the Murat Theatre in Indianapolis. The following year the celebration took place at The Speedway Club in Fort Worth, Texas, while the 2003 event was staged at the House of Blues in Chicago. Disney's Epcot Center and the cruise ship Disney Wonder have hosted the last two Championship Celebrations.

From 1997-99 the awards ceremony took place in Indianapolis, home of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Indy Racing League corporate office.

Drivers, teams and sponsors will experience a social atmosphere during the awards ceremony, which will be highlighted by the presentation of the IndyCar Series Championship Cup and $1 million bonus to the IndyCar Series championship-winning team and driver. Afterward, guests will be treated to an evening of entertainment on the grounds of Paramount Pictures Studios.

The celebration will be telecast at noon (EDT) on Oct. 23 by ESPN2.

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2. Marlboro Team Penske adds to contribution for hurricane relief effort: In its continuing effort to assist the victims of Hurricane Katrina, Marlboro Team Penske has pledged $50 for each lap its drivers completes during the final three events of the 2005 IndyCar Series Season.

At Watkins Glen, Marlboro Team Penske drivers were able to complete 119 laps, which adds up to a donation of $5,950. That, coupled with the team's performance in Chicago, brings the total donation to $25,950 heading into the final race of the season on Oct. 16 at California Speedway, where Castroneves and Hornish Jr. could add another $20,000 should they complete every lap.

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3. Castroneves honored in hometown: Helio Castroneves was honored in his hometown of Ribeirao Preto, Brazil with a display celebrating his career in motorsports.

The exhibition, on display in the Santa Ursula Mall through Nov. 4, was opened with a party attended by Castroneves and his family and marks the first time he's been honored in his hometown during his career.

"I would never expect something like that to happen to me, especially since I am still racing," Castroneves said. "It was beautiful to see all of the items in the display, some of which I had forgotten about, and it was extra special that I was able to show so many of the people I grew up with the Indianapolis 500 trophies and the things they would never have a chance to see."

Among the items on display are highlight videos of his early driving career.

"I looked good," he said. "But, really, every time I saw a clip, I remembered it like it was yesterday. I couldn't be happier and honored to receive such a tribute."

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4. Wheldon sees his silver: Newly crowned IndyCar Series champion Dan Wheldon used a break during his Firestone manufacturers test Oct. 6 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to participate in a photo shoot with the Borg Warner Trophy and the IndyCar Series championship trophy.

Wheldon joked that his appearance had changed a little since he was last photographed with the Borg Warner Trophy in May.

"I think my hair is a little longer that it was in May," said Wheldon, the first IndyCar Series driver to win the championship and the Indianapolis 500 in the same season. "I think my PR agent is a little miffed at me because I forgot to shave, as well."

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The 10th season of IndyCar Series competition continues with the Toyota Indy 400 at 3:30 p.m. (EDT) on Oct. 16 at California Speedway. The race will be broadcast by ESPN and the IMS Radio Network. The race broadcast also will be carried on XM Satellite Radio channel 152 (XM Extreme). The next Menards Infiniti Pro Series race is the California 100 on Oct. 16 at California Speedway. The ESPN2 race telecast will also be available live on ESPN360.com. It will be telecast at 3 p.m. (EDT) on Oct. 20.

-irl-

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About this article
Series IndyCar , Indy Lights
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Dan Wheldon , Brian Barnhart
Teams Team Penske