Ex-IRL star plays role with new Infiniti Pro Series team.
Paul, Jr. to serve as team manager, driving coach for Indianapolis-based Team ISI
INDIANAPOLIS, Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2002 -- Team ISI will field the No. 24 Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone in the 2003 Indy Racing Infiniti Pro Series, team owner Kenn Hardley announced Dec. 3.
Indy Racing veteran John Paul, Jr. will serve as team manager and driving coach for the newly formed team.
Hardley is President of Integrated Services Incorporated (ISI), a transportation, warehousing and logistics company based in Muncie, Ind. After serving as a sponsor of the No. 43 Bowes Seal Fast/Team ISI entry driven by Tony Turco during the 2002 Infiniti Pro Series season, Hardley was eager to increase his involvement in the Indy Racing League's official development program.
"In my business career, I have always attempted to surround myself with quality people," Hardley said. "John Paul Jr. certainly falls into that category. His knowledge and driving experience will be invaluable to an aspiring young driver coming in to this new developmental series.
"With the expanded field and additional races, 2003 is going to be a very exciting year for the Infiniti Pro Series. I look forward to being a part of it."
Paul made his Indy-style racing debut in 1982 and defeated Rick Mears to earn his first open-wheel victory at the 1983 Michigan 500. From 1996-99, Paul competed in 24 Indy Racing events. In 1998, Paul won the Lone Star 500 at Texas Motor Speedway and led 39 laps of the Indianapolis 500 en route to a seventh-place finish.
"I am excited to be back in racing, running this program with my old friend, Kenn Hardley," Paul said.
Paul is in the process of selecting crew members and securing a facility for the team, which will be based in Indianapolis.
The second season of Indy Racing Infiniti Pro Series competition will feature 11 races at some of the nation's finest oval venues, with a 12th event tentatively scheduled for the night before the 87th Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Raceway Park.
The Infiniti Pro Series serves as an essential stepping-stone for drivers striving to reach the pinnacle of open-wheel, oval-track racing in America, the IRL.
Infiniti Q45 engines power Dallara Automobili chassis built for the series, with Firestone Firehawk tires used exclusively on all of the single-seat, winged cars.