IRL: Road to Indy tour news 2005-02-28

JIM BEAM LAUNCHES 'THE ROAD TO INDY' TO PROMOTE RESPONSIBILITY Two-seater race car will tour U.S. en route to Indianapolis 500 INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, Feb. 28, 2005 -- Jim Beam® announced Feb. 28 it has partnered with the Indy Racing League and...

JIM BEAM LAUNCHES 'THE ROAD TO INDY' TO PROMOTE RESPONSIBILITY
Two-seater race car will tour U.S. en route to Indianapolis 500

INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, Feb. 28, 2005 -- Jim Beam® announced Feb. 28 it has partnered with the Indy Racing League and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to bring fans "The Road to Indy," an 89-day tour featuring the Jim Beam drink smart® two-seater car--a street-worthy version of an IndyCar® Series car that has been stretched to fit a passenger.

The program is part of the company's ongoing efforts to promote responsible choices about alcohol and underscore the importance of designating a driver, all while building excitement for the 89th Indianapolis 500 on May 29.

"Responsibility is a top priority at Jim Beam," said Keith Neumann, marketing director for Jim Beam. "The Road to Indy tour communicates our drink smart platform in key markets and reinforces our position as 'The Official Spirit of Racing^Ù.' We are proud to partner with the IRL and IMS to make this program a success."

The tour will kick off in Miami before the IndyCar Series season opener March 6 at Homestead-Miami Speedway and continue to 13 cities before reaching its final destination at the famed 2.5-mile IMS oval, just in time for the Indianapolis 500, on May 29. In each market, the drink smart two-seater will be on location to assist with Jim Beam promotional activities at local retailers. Industry guests and media will experience what it is like behind the wheel of an IndyCar Series car -- from the passenger's seat -- as Indianapolis 500 veteran Davey Hamilton takes the two-seater for a ride.

"Jim Beam's commitment to IRL IndyCar Series and the Indianapolis 500 is creating new opportunities to promote and increase the popularity of the sport," said Joie Chitwood, president and chief operating officer of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. "The Road to Indy program, created by Jim Beam, is another example of their motorsports marketing leadership and why Jim Beam is a valued partner."

The Road to Indy program firmly establishes Jim Beam as a leader in motorsports and its position as "The Official Spirit of Racing". This program demonstrates the company's commitment to the IRL and is only part of its overall efforts to encourage legal purchase age adults who choose to drink to drink smart.

In 2003, the world's No. 1 bourbon became the first major contributor to The Michael Andretti Foundation, a non-profit organization founded by retired racing legend and current IndyCar Series team owner Michael Andretti. For the past two years, Andretti has made donations from a fund provided by Jim Beam to universities in various race markets for the purpose of alcohol education on college campuses. To date, $200,000 has been donated to 18 schools, and Jim Beam plans to continue its support in 2005 with another $100,000 donation.

Jim Beam is the co-major sponsor, along with Klein Tools, on the No. 26 car driven by Dan Wheldon and an associate sponsor for the race cars of Dario Franchitti, Bryan Herta and 2004 IndyCar Series champion Tony Kanaan. Andretti Green Racing fields all four cars.

Jim Beam Brands Co. is an international distilled spirits and fine wines company that manufactures and markets more than 80 brands in 160 countries. Jim Beam Brands Worldwide, Inc. has leadership positions in bourbon, with Jim Beam and Jim Beam Black®, the number one selling bourbon worldwide; Knob Creek® bourbon and The Small Batch Bourbon Collection®; and cordials, with DeKuyper®, the number one cordial line in the United States. In addition to spirits, the Jim Beam Brands Worldwide, Inc. portfolio includes Geyser Peak® and Canyon Road®.

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Indy 500 tickets: To purchase tickets, camping or parking for the 89th Indianapolis 500, contact the IMS ticket office at (800) 822-INDY or log on to www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com.

-ims-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Davey Hamilton , Michael Andretti , Dario Franchitti , Tony Kanaan , Bryan Herta , Dan Wheldon , Jim Beam