Kite Motorsports Kite joins PDM Racing, Sam Schmidt for Indy INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, May 17, 2002 - Three-time Indianapolis 500-starter Jimmy Kite announced today that he will drive the ...
Kite joins PDM Racing, Sam Schmidt for Indy
INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, May 17, 2002 - Three-time Indianapolis 500-starter Jimmy Kite announced today that he will drive the #99 Sam Schmidt Motorsports Racing Special for PDM Racing in this year's "500-mile Sweepstakes." The Stockbridge, Georgia-resident ran 26-laps in morning practice posting a speed of 225.193 mph, 39.9637 seconds around the 2.5 mile oval. The opportunity to drive the Dallara-Chevrolet of the Indianapolis-based team presented itself on Thursday afternoon.
"I am thrilled to be working with PDM Racing and Sam Schmidt Motorsports and to represent BG Products," enthused the 26-year old. "This deal came together late yesterday when Paul (Diatlovich, PDM co-owner) gave me a call. This is just great. PDM always puts together a strong car and they have a great crew. The car just felt awesome right away and we have a few more things we can do with it to get a little more of a cushion. I think that we have a great chance of putting the #99 car in the show."
"We welcome Jimmy to the team and we will do our best to give him a car that will make the show on Sunday." said Diatlovich, a veteran of the sport and Indy Racing team owner since 1996, commenting on Kite's addition to the team.
Kite's first laps of the month came in cool, overcast and windy conditions. The car is currently second in the qualifying order for Sunday morning's final day of time trials for the 86th annual Indianapolis 500. Kite, the 1998 fastest rookie qualifier here, was fifth quickest of the unqualified drivers.
"We had been talking to several different teams about back-up cars to try and qualify but having the chance to run a primary car like this is awesome," continued Kite. "PDM has a great tradition of putting overachieving cars onto the track. They might not have the biggest budget in racing but they put out the biggest efforts. I don't think any team can get more out of a car. It's a privilege to know that when they went looking for a veteran they thought of me. I don't even think of myself as a veteran yet."
Kite began his career racing quarter-midgets at the age of eight and worked his way up through mini-sprints, USAC midgets, sprint cars and Silver Crown cars to the Indy Racing League. He is a five-time national champion in various open-wheel series with countless victories. He has a career total of 22 Indy Racing events and $1,232,000 in career IRL earnings.
More information on PDM Racing, please visit www.pdmracing.com. For more on BG Products, please see www.BGProd.com