Prendeville Gets Caught Up In Accident at Start Of Milwaukee Race; He and the Best Friends Volunteers Look Ahead to IMS WEST ALLIS, Wis., June 2 - Andrew Prendeville was one of the victims of a seven-car accident at the start of Saturday's Road...
Prendeville Gets Caught Up In Accident at Start Of Milwaukee Race; He and the Best Friends Volunteers Look Ahead to IMS
WEST ALLIS, Wis., June 2 - Andrew Prendeville was one of the victims of a seven-car accident at the start of Saturday's Road Runner 100 Indy Pro Series race at the Milwaukee Mile. Although the driver from Morristown, N.J. wasn't hurt, his Best Friends Animal Society No. 5 didn't complete a single lap of the 100-lap race, and placed 20th.
Prendeville and the other Best Friends Animal Society volunteers manning the Racing Laps for Best Friends tent on the midway near Turn 1 here will now focus on his next event, a doubleheader on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway's road course June 16-17. They'll take donations for America's largest no-kill animal sanctuary at their tent and on line at racinglapsforbestfriends.com, and hope for better luck in Indy.
Saturday's race at Milwaukee will be broadcast at 6 p.m. Eastern time this coming Thursday, June 7, on ESPN2. A feature on the Racing Laps for Best Friends program is scheduled to be part of that telecast.
Saturday's race was the first event Prendeville didn't finish this year, and he was totally a victim of circumstances.
He qualified seventh, got to start sixth after the driver ahead of him crashed before the start of the race, but then got clipped by Hideki Mutoh on the initial drop of the green. He ricocheted off the outer wall, spun across the track, got hit by another driver who had no hopes of avoiding him, and ended up hitting the inside wall too.
Seven drivers were involved: Mutoh, Prendeville, Chris Festa, Logan Gomez, Jaime Camara, Al Unser III and Robbie Pecorari.
"Before the start, [Stephen] Simpson popped the clutch, lit up the rear tires and went straight into the wall right in front of me," Prendeville said afterwards.
"Then at the start, Mutoh essentially did the same thing. He popped the clutch, floored it, lit up the rear tires, bounced off the rev limiter, and that's what started it all.
"I know he was trying to get a good run, but I thought we had one going. I don't know why he was so impatient," he said.
"He clipped me and I got into the outside wall. I tried to keep the car up against the wall, but it shot across the track. [Chris] Festa had nowhere to go and he hit me, and then I went into the inside wall. I just covered up at that point; I pulled my legs in and waited for the hit.
"This didn't help the Racing Laps for Best Friends program at all," he continued. "It's a shame. We had a good car. I need to qualify better so I can avoid the messes.
"On a scale of one to 10, I guess the car is a two or a three. It could have been a lot worse."
Through the racinglapsforbestfriends.com Web site, fans all over the world can make a donation to Best Friends based on an amount per lap that Prendeville completes in future Indy Pro Series races.
Donations may also be made by telephone at (435) 644-2001, extension 4801, or by mailing checks payable to "Racing Laps for Best Friends" to: Best Friends Animal Society, 5001 Angel Canyon Road, _Kanab, Utah 84741-5000.
Donations to the Racing Laps for Best Friends program may be made using M asterCard, Visa, American Express or Discover credit cards.
Best Friends Animal Society supports animal welfare programs throughout the world. At any given time it is caring for approximately 1,500 animals at its sanctuary in Kanab, Utah. Best Friends hopes the exposure to racing fans will raise awareness of the organization and gain support for animal welfare.
Saturday's race was the fifth of 16 races on the 2007 schedule.
For more information see racinglapsforbestfriends.com; bestfriends.org, andersenracingteam.com and indycar.com/pro.
-credit: restart communications