MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota, [September 20th, 2000] -- Bellevue, Washington native Chris Bingham and Minnesota based Indy Racing Northern Light Series team owner Corey Coulson both understand all too well the necessary power of persistence when it...
MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota, [September 20th, 2000] -- Bellevue, Washington native Chris Bingham and Minnesota based Indy Racing Northern Light Series team owner Corey Coulson both understand all too well the necessary power of persistence when it comes to pursuing a career in motor racing.
Both have patiently created and worked at their respective plans to reach the top tier of professional Motorsports - the Indianapolis 500. And both have experienced their share of adversity and hurdles along the way.
Bingham has moved constantly forward, gaining valuable experience, ignoring the setbacks and making the most of the opportunities presented him. Although his recent experience has been primarily in the Sports car ranks, the lure of open wheel racing and of competing in the Indianapolis 500 has continued to beckon.
Coulson has been similarly unafraid to "take a chance". Team Coulson originally first introduced current Series sponsor Northern Light to Indy Racing competition at the 1999 Indianapolis 500.
Following up with a gutsy appearance at the 2000 Indy 500, giving a comeback chance to driver Davy Jones who rewarded the team with a strong qualifying effort in their 1999 G-Force only to be bumped at the last minute. And finally realizing a lifelong dream by qualifying this past August for the Team and Coulson's first Indy Racing event at Kentucky with veteran driver Roberto Guerrero.
Proving that patience, persistence, performance and hard work really does pay, both Team Coulson and Chris Bingham have taken another step toward their goal, with Bingham's signing with Team Coulson to complete his Rookie orientation and compete in the 2000 Indy Racing Northern Light Series Season Finale at Texas Motor Speedway.
Note: Bingham's Rookie Orientation Program is scheduled for October 4th and 5th at Texas Motor Speedway. Upon successful completion he will compete in his first Indy Racing event - the Excite 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, October 15th, 2000.
About Chris Bingham:
With the support of his father David, a prominent Bellevue business leader and racing enthusiast, Bingham began his racing career at the age of 10.
Starting in motocross, Bingham has built a solid resume of diversified racing accomplishments.
>From sneaking one of his fathers Porsches onto the track at Seattle International Raceway during his teen years he would build his experience attending the Skip Barber Formula Ford schools, competing in numerous Porsche Club events and winning the Jim Russell Racing school graduate run-offs in 1991. Earning a sponsored ride in the 1992 Russell Triple Crown Championship Series, his 6 wins and 15 podium finishes earned a 2nd place finish in the Series. Two wins and one podium finish in 3 events in the 1992 Russell Pro Series earned another 2nd place overall Series finish and earned Bingham an Indy Lights test as well.
Continuing to sharpen his skills, Bingham has competed in the Daytona 24 Hours Race, Sebring 12 Hour event; IMSA, American Lemans Series and Grand Am events, instructed at a local race driving school and continued to drive his Porsche in local events, along the way helping raise $80,000 for Seattle's Children's Hospital.
In 1997 after testing with Leading Edge and PacWest, Bingham competed in four Indy Lights events with Leading Edge, gaining valuable insight and experience in the higher horsepower open wheel cars.
1998 saw a return to endurance racing competing at the Daytona 24 Hours and Sebring 12 Hours and 1999 found him in his first full season of Motor Racing. Tapped by the Hybrid R&D to compete in the Prototype Sports Car Championship, and competing against the multi-car factory teams and Championship winning Privateers Bingham helped earn the team a top ten spot in the Championship.
The lure of open wheel racing and of competing in the Indianapolis 500 has, however, continued to beckon to Bingham.
Born in 1971 in Seattle, Washington, Chris still makes the Pacific Northwest his home. The family exotic car business, Park Place Ltd. ( www.ParkPlaceLtd.com ) has provided employment over the years, allowing Chris to make both excellent corporate and racing contacts. His driving skill and ability to teach others has also led to a position as a driving instructor for Proformance, an advanced driving school at Seattle International Raceway. When not working or racing, Chris enjoys golf, fitness training, running, skiing and summer watersports. In addition, Chris is a member of PONCHO, a Seattle Fine Arts society, and sits on the boards of the Bellevue Art Museum and the Fisher Investment Companies.
In his career, Chris has had successful sponsor associations with Microsoft, Compaq, Yokohama and Altech Investments. He has proven to be an informed and effective spokesman for each of these corporations.
About Team Coulson:
Team Coulson was formed in 1997 by Corey Coulson. The team is based in southeastern Minnesota in the small town of Money Creek.
In 1998, the team entered its first race at Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida. Affonso Giaffone was the driver of Team Coulson's G Force racing entry. Unfortunately, rain ruined the team's chances as qualifying was cancelled and the field was filled by the 1997 Entrant Rule. Later that year, the team posted an entry in the 1998 Indianapolis 500. A last-minute loss of a sponsor left the team out of the field.
In 1999, the team acquired Northern Light as their sponsor for the Indianapolis 500. Northern Light would subsequently become the Indy Racing League Series sponsor for the 2000 through 2004 seasons. The entry in the race was made in conjunction with Team Scandia with Jim Guthrie as the driver. Due to a late start, the team was just getting up to speed on the last Sunday of qualifying when rain once again spoiled their chances. The rest of the season was cancelled for Team Coulson when Corey's father, Joseph, grew sick from cancer. Joseph died in December 1999.
In 2000 Team Coulson once again entered the Indianapolis 500. Securing one of the best prepared 1999 chassis' available from Dick Simon Racing, Team Coulson took a chance and signed Davy Jones as the teams driver for the 2000 Indy 500. Coming back from serious injuries earlier in his career Davy Jones proved the teams trust in his abilities was well placed, as he qualified the Team Coulson car 33rd in the field with 15 minutes left on Bubble Day only to be bumped from the field at nearly the last possible moment a few minutes later. It was a strong testament to Davy's skills and the team's preparation that this 1999 car was able to attain a speed of 215 mph with the teams limited on track time.
In August 2000, with Roberto Guerrero in the cockpit, Corey Coulson realized a lifelong dream as Team Coulson qualified for and competing in it's first Indy Racing event at the new Kentucky Speedway, finishing 23rd due to a broken oil intercooler which prematurely ended the team's day.
Team Coulson continues to work diligently toward the goal of becoming a full time participant in the Indy Racing Northern Light Series.