ProVee: Indianapolis Raceway Park preview

America's premier open-wheeled, grassroots road racing series makes its ninth consecutive visit to Indianapolis Raceway Park (IRP) July 7-8, 2001. The Valvoline ProVee Series expects between 20-25 cars for the fourth race of their five-race ...

America's premier open-wheeled, grassroots road racing series makes its ninth consecutive visit to Indianapolis Raceway Park (IRP) July 7-8, 2001. The Valvoline ProVee Series expects between 20-25 cars for the fourth race of their five-race season

This race is part of the Indy Grand Prix, hosted annually by the Indianapolis Region of the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA). The vehicle of choice for the ProVee series, which is the first race following lunch on Sunday, is SCCA's venerable Formula Vee.

Leading the way is three-time defending season champion Brad Stout from St. Louis. Stout, the 1998 SCCA Formula Vee national champion, has won the IRP ProVee event four of the past five years. He narrowly edged IRP regulars Jeff Loughead and Greg Buttrey to win the past two years, and all three will be contenders again this year. Loughead, from Darien, Ill., has racked up three ProVee wins at IRP and would like nothing better than to upset Brad and slow his march to another championship. Indianapolis driver Buttrey was runner-up at the 2000 SCCA national championships.

But this trio sure won't be running up front by themselves. Hot on Brad's heals in the season points chase is Don Schanche, an improving driver from Chesterfield, Mo. From Manhattan, Kan., Bill Noble, former ProVee champion and five-time SCCA Formula Vee national champion and Lisa Noble, another veteran who was selected as the most improved driver in SCCA for 2000, are also among the points leaders and contenders in this event.

A couple of others who frequent IRP and could challenge for the win are the Richardson brothers from Pekin, Ill. Rich nabbed his first-ever ProVee pole at St. Louis is May and pushed Stout hard for most of the race before being slowed by mechanical problems. Richardson held on to nab second place, his best ProVee finish. Mark edged Buttrey for the SCCA Central Division Formula Vee title last year and leads the class again this season.

Formula Vee racecars are small (1025 pounds, including driver), open-wheeled, non-winged cars powered by VW engines from the 1960s. Capable of top speeds approaching 125 mph, Vee drivers rely on drafting techniques and driving skill to produce the most exciting road racing you'll see at any level, amateur or professional!

-Randy Fisher

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About this article
Series Other open wheel
Drivers Brad Stout , Bill Noble , Lisa Noble
Tags GRASSROOTS