IPS: Indy I/II: Sean Guthrie preview

SEAN GUTHRIE REUNITES WITH THE INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY FOR ROAD COURSE DOUBLEHEADER; Good Result at Milwaukee Mile Combined With Productive Test At Putnam Park Create Momentum Heading Into Indy / F1 Weekend ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico ...


Good Result at Milwaukee Mile Combined With Productive Test At Putnam Park Create Momentum Heading Into Indy / F1 Weekend

ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico (June 12, 2007) -- Guthrie Racing's Indy Pro Series team and driver Sean Guthrie are taking the momentum they accumulated from a fourth-place finish in the Milwaukee Mile's Indy Pro Series event 10 days ago to this week's doubleheader races on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway's road course, in conjunction with the massive Formula One Grand Prix weekend. The "Liberty Challenge," two separate races, will be contested on Saturday, June 16th and Sunday, June 17th, the sixth and seventh races of the 16-race Indy Pro Series schedule in 2007.

"I can't wait to get back to Indy and the upcoming road course events," Guthrie said excitedly. "I didn't get the opportunity to race the "Liberty Challenge" last year because the Indy Racing League was holding me out of the event due to an injury I received in a test at Milwaukee, unfortunately. But our early-season bad luck seems to be turning around with my career-best fourth-place finish in Milwaukee last week and the good test we had at Putnam Park this week, so I'm hoping that good progress will continue. We have really clicked as a team recently, and our preparation has been really smooth and uneventful, so I'm hoping that this momentum continues for the Indy shows as well as the upcoming races later this month."

In preparation for the upcoming road course events at Indianapolis, Watkins Glen and Mid-Ohio, the Guthrie Racing Team participated in a test at nearby Putnam Park Road Course, a 10-turn, 1.8-mile track in Mt. Meridian, Ind., this past week.

"We had a great test at Putnam Park in preparation for the upcoming "Liberty Challenge" road course events at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in conjunction with their Formula One Grand Prix this weekend," Guthrie stated. "I worked well with my teammates, and we were all pretty quick -- pretty much as fast as any other team that has tested there recently. They were quick in spots, and I was quick in others, so having teammates to share different strategies for different points in the track, and exchange setup information, is really valuable. But we really weren't working on setups for that track since we don't race there -- we were working more on Indy setups. This test will also pay off once we get to more similar tracks like Watkins Glen and Mid-Ohio. It did give me more seat time on a road course, which will always help. We worked on normal road course stuff like optimizing braking and slowing our corner speeds in order to be smoother on the whole course. We'll use what I learned this week in combination with Rafael's (Matos, who drove for Guthrie Racing last year as Sean sat the race out with a head injury sustained in a Milwaukee test) data from last year to come up with a good setup for Indy."

Recently Guthrie formed a formal partnership with the Susan G. Komen For The Cure organization that will see him be an official Komen ambassador, and also participate on the celebrity board for the Passionately Pink For The Cure (TM) (PPFTC) outreach. PPFTC is a national fundraising and education program established to drive breast cancer advocacy and honor/celebrate those affected by breast cancer.

"I'm so honored to be a part of such an important organization like Susan G. Komen For the Cure and their Passionately Pink For The Cure program," Guthrie exclaimed. "My mother, Missy, is a two-time breast cancer survivor, so this is a cause that hits literally close to home for me. Although my life is filled with racing cars, there's so much more to life than going fast and winning races. The health of my family, and everyone I know and care about, is supremely important to me. If I can play a small part in helping others to possibly prevent breast cancer, and be a part of an organization that raises funds for breast cancer advocacy, then I'm happy to spend any amount of time to do my part. This is just the beginning of my relationship with the Komen organization. I am really excited about the future and for all of the programs I might be able to get involved with - I'm hoping to help them in any way possible."

To kick off this affiliation between Guthrie and the Susan G. Komen For The Cure organization, he participated in Albuquerque's Komen Race For The Cure last Sunday, June 10th, along with his mother, Missy. The Race For The Cure is the largest series of 5K runs/fitness walks in the world, with well over 1 million participants since 2005. The Komen Race for the Cure Series raises significant funds and awareness for the fight against breast cancer, celebrates breast cancer survivorship and honors those who have lost their battle with the disease.

"It was a really neat experience for both my mother and me -- neither of us have ever been to a Komen event in the past," Guthrie explained. "What a great organization! I got to be an official starter for the 5K run and fitness walk along with my mom and local Ford dealer Don Chalmers. My mom was also really touched by the amount of support breast cancer awareness is getting both locally and nationally. The sheer amount of people that showed up for this event was a bit overwhelming. I am really looking forward to this year and to helping to promote breast cancer awareness and funding for research to cure this horrible disease through the Susan G. Komen Race For The Cure and their Passionately Pink For The Cure initiative. This is just the beginning, and I'm really hoping that I can help shine a bright light on the work these dedicated people are doing year round."

Guthrie's mother, Missy, is a two-time survivor of breast cancer (1994 and 2001), accompanied him to the Albuquerque event and was similarly touched by the amount of support the disease is receiving.

"It was a really good day," Missy said of the day of celebration. "We got to talk to a lot of people who are affected by this disease. Both Sean and I got to start the 5K run and fitness walk with local car dealer Don Chalmers, who actually was the one to create the Albuquerque Walk For The Cure event. It was a much bigger turnout than they expected -- probably close to 6,000 people came out to support this cause. It was really cool to see everyone there all working toward curing breast cancer. Obviously, as a survivor myself, this was an emotional experience that will resonate with me for a long time -- I'm really glad to have been a part of it."

In its inaugural year in 2006, Komen's PPFTC program inspired grassroots activism across the country, encouraging more than 7,000 businesses, places of worship, schools, social organizations and individuals to join the global breast cancer movement. Beginning October 1, as it kicks off National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Komen is challenging organizations large and small to "Pick Your Pink. Play Your Part. End Breast Cancer." People pick a day in October, pay $5 and wear pink, throw a pink party, etc. Last year the program raised more than $3 million. Individuals or group organizers can register at www.passionatelypink.org .

After conquering dual road course events at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Indy Pro Series warriors get back to oval racing, heading to Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa, on Saturday, June 23rd.

-credit: www.SeanGuthrie.com .

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Series Indy Lights
Drivers Sean Guthrie