NA-F2000: Team USA Scholarship support expands

New and Old Supporters Keep the Team USA Scholarship Flag Flying Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif. (November 2, 2006) ---- A mix of stalwart supporters and a fresh array of new contributors have combined to make it possible to send two talented...

New and Old Supporters Keep the Team USA Scholarship Flag Flying

Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif. (November 2, 2006) ---- A mix of stalwart supporters and a fresh array of new contributors have combined to make it possible to send two talented young American drivers on a very special mission to England over the next two weekends, when Dane Cameron and Robert Podlesni will fly the patriotic red, white and blue colors of the Team USA Scholarship in the six-race Formula Palmer Audi Autumn Trophy.

Many former winners of the prestigious award have lent their own financial support behind this latest wave of new talent, including inaugural winner Jimmy Vasser (1990), who went on to win a Champ Car World Series title and is now part-owner of the PKV Racing team; Bryan Herta (1991), who recently confirmed he will drive an Acura-powered Courage for Andretti Green Racing in the 2007 American Le Mans Series; 2004 Indianapolis 500 winner Buddy Rice (1997), who will make his Champ Car debut for Forsythe Championship Racing in next week's season finale in Mexico City; and A.J. Allmendinger (2001), one of the stars of this year's Champ Car title-chase who recently announced he will switch his attention to the 2007 NASCAR Nextel Cup with the new Red Bull Toyota team.

"The Team USA Scholarship was definitely a key element in jump-starting my professional racing career," says Allmendinger. "I don't think I'd be where I am today without it.

"I'm happy I'm able to continue my support of this program and grateful that there are people like Jeremy Shaw who work so hard so that drivers starting out can get a chance to show their talents on an international stage."

One of the program's staunchest supporters in recent years, Mockett.com, a Torrance, Calif.-based producer and supplier of "Fine Architectural Hardware For Your Fine Furniture," will continue to feature prominently on the cars.

"Team USA Scholarship has provided the foundations for some of the best open-wheel racers in the USA since 1990," says Mockett, an avid vintage car racer who next week will take on a quest of his own -- to score his second victory in the famed La Carrera Panamericana road race in Mexico for the second time in the last five years.

"Just read the list of past winners -- Vasser, Herta, Gidley, Allmendinger, Rice -- to name a few," continues Mockett. "Team USA is vitally important to nurture talented young drivers in reaching the next step in their careers."

Mockett's enthusiasm is mirrored by several new and returning supporters, who between them represent virtually the entire auto racing spectrum in North America. Among them are American Honda, Champ Car team RuSPORT, ALMS team Highcroft Racing, Rolex Grand-Am team Michael Shank Racing, Sparco Racewear, Speedstar Management and Snap-on Tools.

"Snap-on has enjoyed a long and storied presence in motorsports," declares Carl O. Johanson, director - motorsports operations for Kenosha, Wis.-based Snap-on Tools, LLC. "Our support for the Team USA Scholarship demonstrates our continued commitment to the future of the sport. It's also a natural extension of our sponsorship of the Snap-on Stars of Karting Series presented by the Indy Racing League. We are proud to join the family of other fine companies that make this program possible."

Cameron, 18, from Sonoma, Calif., and Podlesni, from Thousand Oaks, Calif., who will celebrate his 19th birthday this weekend, are currently in England preparing for this weekend's trio of races at the famed Snetterton circuit. The Formula Palmer Audi Autumn Trophy, which features identically prepared open-wheel cars powered by turbocharged 300-horsepower engines, will conclude one week later with another three races at Brands Hatch.

For more information about becoming involved in the 2006 Team USA Scholarship and continuing to assist talented young American drivers at a crucial early stage in their careers, please contact Jeremy Shaw on 949-766-9504 or by email: jeremyshawracer@cox.net.

-credit: js

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Series Other open wheel
Drivers Jimmy Vasser , A.J. Allmendinger , Buddy Rice , Jeremy Shaw , Michael Shank , Dane Cameron