IRL: Buzz Bits pre-Joliet

Buzz Bits - Notes on Buzz Calkins and Bradley Motorsports Delphi Indy 300 - Chicagoland Speedway ...

Buzz Bits - Notes on Buzz Calkins and Bradley Motorsports
Delphi Indy 300 - Chicagoland Speedway
#12 Bradley Food Marts/ Sav-O-Mat Dallara-Oldsmobile

home away from home

Buzz Calkins is no stranger to the Chicagoland. His mother, Kathy, grew-up in the area and as a child Buzz spent summers visiting his grandparents in the "Windy City". Buzz returned to Chicago in 1998 to earn his Master's of Business Administration (MBA) from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University. Prior to graduating in 2000, Calkins ran in two LaSalle Banks Chicago Marathons (1999, 2000). Today, his younger sister, Hilary, lives and works in Chicago. To Calkins, Chicago is truly his home away from home.

ties that bind

Buzz Calkins has been heavily involved in Evanston-based "Natural Ties" since 1995. The charity, of which Buzz sits on the board of directors, was designed to help college-aged individuals with disabilities to assimilate into mainstream society. Most government programs end at 18-years-old forcing many to withdraw from society. Natural Ties uses college-age kids to help associate their peers with many of their interests on college campuses. Buzz has been a part of Natural Ties for a number of years doing fundraisers and bringing those young-adults with an interest in auto racing to the track.

ten for eleven

Buzz Calkins opened the 2001 Indy Racing Northern Light Series with a ninth-place finish at Phoenix International Raceway (PIR). Since, Bradley Motorsports has remained in the top-ten of IRL points throughout the season. Following round-11 at Gateway International Raceway (GIR), Calkins currently sits tenth in driver points with 200. In 2001, Calkins has a high finish of third at Atlanta Motor Speedway (AMS) and was running at the finish of every race until the most recent event at Gateway. Gateway would have matched the all-time record of consecutive races running at the finish, a record that Calkins holds, at 13. Unfortunately, contact on pit lane with another car following his first pit stop cost Calkins a chance at one-upping his own record. To date, Calkins has finished 39 of his 51 Indy Racing starts for a finishing total of 76.47%. Despite the disappointment at Gateway, the #12 Bradley Food Marts/ Sav-O-Mat Dallara has completed 2,027 of 2,250 laps in 2001.

stay in school

Buzz Calkins is the only active IRL driver to hold a Masters of Business Administration (MBA), a degree completed last year while competing in the Northern Light Series fulltime. Many ask why a successful race driver, already holding an undergraduate degree from the University of Colorado in economics and history, would return to school to pursue a degree that, if all goes well, he will never need. The main reason for returning for his MBA, at one of the country's premier schools, the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University, was for something to fall back on. However, he has no plans of utilizing it soon.

the routine

Driving a race car at 220 miles per hour requires skill, strength and stamina. To keep his edge, Buzz Calkins has a rigorous workout routine that readies him for the physical punishment and mentally sharp to concentrate for two or more hours in the car. Due to the increase in heart and breathing rate, his daily workout focuses on cardiovascular fitness. A runner, Buzz spends hours on the street putting in mile after mile to build his heart and lungs for physical endurance. To complement the cardio aspect of the regime he does high repetitions of light weights in the gym. This encourages lean muscle growth without 'bulking-up' muscle mass which would hinder movement in the car. The workout requires serious commitment and includes running in the morning and weight training in the afternoon. The effort has led to excellent physical condition in the #12 Bradley Food Marts/ Sav-O-Mat Dallara and to three marathon appearances- two LaSalle Banks Chicago Marathons (1999, 2000) and the 1998 New York City Marathon. His best marathon time is 3 hours, 41 minutes and 11 seconds at the 2000 Chicago event.

Buzz Bites - Quotes by Buzz Calkins and Bradley Motorsports
Delphi Indy 300 - Chicagoland Speedway
#12 Bradley Food Marts/ Sav-O-Mat Dallara-Oldsmobile

Buzz Calkins, driver

(about his feelings in his return to Chicago)
"After living two of the past three years in Evanston, I feel like Chicago is my second home. My younger sister and a bunch of friends still live there so I try to get back as often as possible. My mom grew up there and I visited my grandparents every summer while growing up. Chicago definitely has special meaning."

(about the team's test at Chicagoland Speedway)
"We had a very successful test at Chicagoland a few weeks ago and we took an immediate liking to the track. This should bode well going into the weekend and then hopefully we can capitalize on the test and move forward with the Bradley Food Marts/ Sav-O-Mat Dallara as the weekend progresses."

(about comparing Chicagoland to the other new tracks on the Northern Light Series schedule)
"Even though Chicago is a one and a half mile track like so many of the other tracks that we run it is unique in many ways. The banking is not as steep as Texas but a little steeper than what you have at places like Kansas City and Kentucky. The track also has some bumps in turns three and four to which you have to adjust. I think you should be able to get some good side by side racing in although it isn't as wide as some of the other places we go."

(about the facilities at Chicagoland Speedway)
"Facility-wise, I would put this track up there with almost any track in the country. They keep learning as they go so each new track gets better and better."

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Buzz Calkins