Corteco To Sponsor No. 7 Kelley Racing Entry With Unser Jr. Behind The Wheel INDIANAPOLIS, Feb. 21, 2002& ...
Corteco To Sponsor No. 7 Kelley Racing Entry With Unser Jr. Behind The Wheel
INDIANAPOLIS, Feb. 21, 2002– Kelley Racing announced today that Al Unser Jr. would drive the No. 7 Kelley Racing entry through the 2004 season. The team’s original plan was to field three cars in the Indy Racing League, but when funding came up short on the No. 7 entry with driver Greg Ray, owner Tom Kelley had to make the tough decision of going back to two cars with drivers Unser and Scott Sharp, driver of the No. 8 Delphi car.
“ The Unser name has been synonymous with racing for a long time,” stated Tom Kelley, owner of Kelley Racing,“ but Al Jr.’s accomplishments stand alone and we’re proud to have him aboard.”
This season marks the third year in the Indy Racing League for Unser, two-time Indianapolis 500 Champion. His racing credentials and championships span a variety of different series, including two-time CART Champion (1990, 1994) and two-time Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona winner (1986, 1987).
Unser is also a two-time IROC Champion (1986, 1988) and received his 15th invitation to the International Race of Champions Series this year, second only to the late Dale Earnhardt.
“ I’m happy to be joining Kelley Racing,” said Unser.“ It’s been a long time coming. They’re the most impressive team in this business and I feel that I’m with the best team. I’d also like to welcome Corteco into the Indy Racing League and hope that our relationship is beneficial for everyone.”
Unser will drive the No. 7 Corteco Bryant Dallara/Chevy/Firestone in the 2002 season. Corteco specializes in automotive aftermarket sealing and vibration control products.
Corteco was established in 2001 as the aftermarket business of the world’s largest supplier of original-equipment (OE) automotive gaskets and seals, Freudenberg-NOK. Freudenberg-NOK pioneered the total powertrain sealing concepts that automakers around the world have adopted for dry, warranty-free engines and transmissions. Corteco’s focus in the aftermarket business is to deliver that same level of OE quality and technology.
“ Corteco is thrilled to be the primary sponsor of Kelley Racing with one of the true icons of motorsports behind the wheel,” said Greg Gyllstrom, President & CEO of Corteco.“ We will have a comprehensive program revolving around the sponsorship, which will include a traveling Corteco technology display for customers, targeted advertising and many relationship-marketing activities. This sponsorship will play a major role in helping us establish a strong Corteco brand in the aftermarket.”
The company’s product lines include CorTec engine gaskets, TransTec transmission and power steering rebuild kits, and MounTec engine, transmission and strut mounts and bushings. In addition, Corteco produces oil seals, in-vehicle crankshaft seal kits and cabin air filters. Corteco is based in Plymouth, Mich., with manufacturing and distribution facilities in Milan, Ohio, and Newport, Tenn.
“ Kelley Racing has always felt that it was important to have business-to-business relationships with our sponsors,” said Tom Kelley.“ Corteco brings with them that same sense of values, business practices and technologies that can only produce successful results for all involved.”
Kelley Racing has accumulated six wins and eight poles in Indy Racing League competition. Formed in 1997, the team begins their sixth season of Indy Racing competition on March 2 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.