IRL: Hemelgarn IRL Test to Toledo Sprint Car Winner!

Ron Hemelgarn, whose Indy Racing League team currently leads the Indy Racing Northern Light Series standings with driver Buddy Lazier, has announced he will provide an IRL test for the winning driver in the Stoops Freightliner/USAC Sprint...

Ron Hemelgarn, whose Indy Racing League team currently leads the Indy Racing Northern Light Series standings with driver Buddy Lazier, has announced he will provide an IRL test for the winning driver in the Stoops Freightliner/USAC Sprint Car race at the Toledo, Ohio Speedway July 7! A resident of the Toledo area, Hemelgarn remembers the rich heritage of Toledo racing and its connection to the sport of Indy car racing through drivers like Lee Kunzman, Gary Bettenhausen, Tom Sneva, Bruce Walkup, Pancho Carter, Tom Bigelow, Larry Dickson, Steve Chassey and Rich Vogler, all Toledo Sprint Car winners and Indianapolis 500 veterans. "I see this as an extension of our commitment to short-track oval racing as a stepping stone to Indy car racing," said Hemelgarn. "Back in the 1970's, the road to Indy ran through the USAC Sprint Cars and Toledo Speedway. We have the opportunity to turn back the hands of time with this event and return some of the former glory to this series and Toledo Speedway by giving the winner a test in one of our IRL Indy cars." Hemelgarn's team, with Lazier at the controls, captured the IRL race at Phoenix earlier this year and finished second in the May 28 Indianapolis 500. The July 7 Toledo USAC race will be sponsored by Hemelgarn Racing and will salute Toledo's favorite son - Rollie Beale - who won the 1973 USAC National Sprint Car Championship but was never able to compete at Indy. "It's a pleasure to bring the USAC Sprint Cars back to Toledo Speedway," added Ron Drager, owner and promoter of the 1/2-mile paved oval. "USAC has conducted numerous races here but not since 1989. We jumped at the chance to have them back and Ron Hemelgarn's involvement is sure to make this the biggest open-wheel event we've ever had here." Hemelgarn's 1996 Indianapolis 500 winning car will be on display and a number of former USAC Sprint Car pilots are expected to be in attendance for the special tribute to Rollie Beale, who not only was a great competitor but also served for years as USAC's Sprint Car Chief Steward. A commemorative program will also feature photos of past USAC stars and a dinner and autograph session are planned as part of the evening's activities. Some lucky fan will also win two tickets to the 2001 Indianapolis 500 in a special "lucky number" program drawing. ESPN2 will telecast the event and a special prize will be awarded to the fan with the best-appearing banner featuring Toledo Speedway, USAC Sprint Cars, Hemelgarn Racing and ESPN2. The race will mark the 17th time the Stoops Freightliner USAC Sprint Cars have competed at Toledo Speedway. Beale is the all-time leader in terms of victories, with five. Tickets for the July 7 Toledo Speedway event are available at the track at (419) 727-1100. Visa and Mastercard are accepted for advance ticket purchases.

--USAC--

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Series IndyCar , USAC
Drivers Buddy Lazier , Tom Sneva , Pancho Carter