IRL: Greg Ray statement on the Indy 500 and rest of season

INDIANAPOLIS (May 13, 2004) - Comments from Greg Ray, driver/owner ...

INDIANAPOLIS (May 13, 2004) - Comments from Greg Ray, driver/owner #13, pertaining to Access Motorsports and its participation in this year's Indy 500, as well as the remainder of the IRL IndyCar Series season:

"Speculation and rumors abound that have led to misinformation being written as fact regarding why Access Motorsports has not yet been on track in preparation for this year's running of the Indy 500.

"Renovac, Tracy Carboy, Capgemini, Panasonic and University Loft have performed excellently for us as associate sponsors involved with our team, and we will continue to do everything we can to insure they receive an excellent return. Our powerful Honda motor, G-force chassis and Firestone tire combination, along with our passionate crew, have provided incredible performance and competitiveness way beyond our financial resources. The budgets necessary to run even the smallest team are enormous. But, as you know, we ended the 2003 season and began the 2004 season without the financial resources and stability of primary sponsorship support. We have been rolling forward, taking financial risks and putting skin in the game. We are confident and totally committed to making this competitive team successful and creating a winning business platform for sponsorship partners.

"However, we have reached the all-important month of May - the Indianapolis 500 - and we are still without primary sponsorship. But believe me, we have been working 24-7 to finalize the business requirements and issues necessary to insure not only our near-term future, but, of ultimate importance, the long term future of Access Motorsports.

"It is not my goal for this team to merely get through the next day, the next week, or through the end of the month. I'm firmly committed to Honda and the IRL and to continue on the path we started early last season and for many, many years to come.

"Anyone who knows the business of racing knows the complexities involved in pursuing the goals we have laid out for ourselves, and everyone in this organization is working feverishly to make it all happen.

"Focusing on the long-term health of this program and the lack of track time is absolutely affecting our immediate preparations for this year's Indy 500. As much as we hate that, we are making decisions today that we believe will allow us the ability to navigate toward a successful long-term future. Every successful team on pit lane has dealt with these types of issues at one time or another.

"We know we are a dark horse in comparison to the might and power of the big teams. The cards are stacked against us every day. But we enjoy the fight, and we are looking for sponsors and partners who enjoy that sprit and competition of taking on the big boys.

We are hoping to solidify our business issues and return to the track as quickly as we can."

-ams/gr-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Greg Ray