VW Jetta: Series names Utah guest drivers

VOLKSWAGEN TO HOST FOUR GUEST DRIVERS THIS WEEKEND IN UTAH A Varied Group of Stars to Join the Jetta TDI Cup at Miller Motorsports Park HERNDON, Va. (June 2, 2010) -- Volkswagen of America, Inc. has announced that four guest drivers will ...

A Varied Group of Stars to Join the Jetta TDI Cup at Miller Motorsports Park

HERNDON, Va. (June 2, 2010) -- Volkswagen of America, Inc. has announced that four guest drivers will participate in Round Four of the Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup season at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah on Sunday, June 6.

The field will move from 25 to 29 drivers as the following personalities will join the Series-regulars on race day: Roger Hayden, who currently competes on the World Superbike Tour, has earned a total of 13 AMA Supersport wins in his career; Anthony Lobello, a member of the 2006 US Speed Skating Olympic team, currently holds the 1000m American short track speed skating record; Grete Eliassen is a professional Red Bull freeskier who has found gold at the Winter X-Games twice; and Thomas Lyman, a journalist who currently writes for 0-60 Magazine, but has also dabbled in a career in professional motorsports making his way to competition on the national level.

While these four guest drivers may all come from different corners of the sporting world, the one thing they have in common is their love of speed; which will certainly make for an interesting weekend as they square off against the Jetta TDI Cup field on the East Course at Miller Motorsports Park. Each of the guests will participate in the Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup race, as well as take part in all on and off-track events, including practice and qualifying. While they'll be full participants, they will be ineligible for points or prize money. Full-time series participants will move up the final race results accordingly.

"I'm looking forward to seeing our guest drivers compete in the TDI Cup this weekend," said Clark Campbell, Motorsports Manager, Volkswagen of America, Inc. "All four of our guests have very different experiences with racing, but they all share the common thread of competition. I think they will definitely be able to not only educate our drivers about their past experiences throughout their professional careers, but they also have the unique ability to broaden the reach of our Series."

About the Guest Drivers:

Roger Hayden:

Hayden was born and raised in Owensboro, Kentucky, where he still lives today. His two older brothers Nicky and Tommy are also professional motorcycle racers. His father, Earl Hayden, was a dirt track racer for twenty years and his mother Rose raced in the Powder Puff class for five years. He also has two sisters, Jenny and Kathleen. Hayden began riding at the age of five and entered his first race when he was six. When he's not at the track, he likes to watch football, basketball, and auto racing. Hayden lists his hobbies as motocross, flat track, hunting, and fishing. His heroes are Kenny Roberts, Freddie Spencer, Ronnie Jones and Michael Jordan.

This season, Hayden is competing in the World Superbike Championship as a driver for the Pedercini Kawasaki satellite team. In 2009, Hayden competed in the Daytona Sportbike 600cc Class. In 2008, he produced a third-place finish in the AMA Supersport class at the first race at Daytona International Speedway. He would miss the next five races after suffering injuries from a crash at Barber Motorsports Park, but would return to competition at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca where he finished sixth in the AMA Superbike class.

In 2007, he earned his first professional Championship in the AMA Supersport class. He used two wins and consistent finishes to edge out his teammate by two points. Hayden also earned five top-five AMA Superbike finishes on the Kawasaki Ninja® ZX™-10R and finished tenth, and was the top American competitor, in his MotoGP debut as a wild-card at the USGP.

In 2006, Hayden was named AMA Superbike Rookie of the Year; and he also won AMA Supersport races at Daytona International Raceway, Barber Motorsports Park and the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. From 2004-2005, Hayden earned a total of eight wins over the two seasons and finished as runner-up both years in the AMA Supersport points standings behind his brother and teammate Tommy Hayden.

Anthony Lobello:

Anthony Lobello, originally from Tallahassee, FL, began skating on roller skates when he was seven years old, and won his first national championship that same year. He's been winning ever since. He decided to switch to short track speed skating, on ice, in the summer of 2003. His transition to ice was made complete less then three years later, when he made the short track Olympic Team in 2006.

Anthony has been representing the United States of America in international competition since he was 15. His accomplishments range from inline national champion and world champion to short track world cup champion and a place on the US Olympic Team. Anthony has numerous world championship and world cup medals to his name as well as the current 1000m American record in short track speed skating.

Currently, Anthony is continuing his higher education this summer on the campus of Northern Michigan University at the United States Olympic Education Center, in Marquette, MI. Anthony is committed to his education as well as being the very best skater he can be. Majoring in Sports Marketing and teaching skate clinics, Anthony is passionate about mentoring to help young skaters pursue their dreams.

Grete Eliassen:

Grete was born in St. Louis Park, Minnesota. Her mother was from the Midwest and her father was Norwegian, and as a result, Grete grew up speaking two languages (English and Norwegian). Looking for more excitement at the tender age of two, Grete quickly found it in skiing. For the first five years of her life, Grete lived in Minnesota, skiing some of North America's finest mountains. After a brief one-year stint living in a small town in Norway, Grete and her family moved back to the lakeshores of Lake Superior. Upon her return, Grete became involved in several different sports: hockey, soccer, basketball, tennis, water-skiing, little league as well as cross-country skiing and alpine skiing.

At the age of 13, Grete's family, moved back to Norway -- this time, to Lilehammer. Having already begun her skiing career back in Minnesota, she decided to continue on in Norway. After only a year, Grete was named the Norwegian SL National Champion. Soon thereafter, Grete was selected to join the Norwegian Ski Team, where she stayed for two seasons. At the age of 16, Grete won the Super-G at Junior Worlds in France and placed third in Slalom at the European Junior Olympics in Slovenia.

After a few more years of competition, Grete realized that racing was not the type of skiing she ultimately was satisfied with. Even though her career in racing was rather strong - positioning herself at the top of her age-group in nearly every event - she had a longing to be free.

Grete soon found her love of freeskiing. Her first year of freestyle competition went very well, taking first place in both the Rip Curl Freeski and the U.S. Open. Since her debut as a freeskier, Grete has won the U.S. Open four times, as well as capturing both a gold and silver medal, two years in a row, at the Winter X Games. Additionally, Grete has also claimed the top spot at all open events in the same year by winning the U.S. Open, European Open and the Nippon Open.

Grete now resides in Salt Lake City, Utah where she attends the University of Utah. She is currently working towards obtaining her B.S. in Business Management. Grete is always looking for ways to make her mark and change the world of skiing, as women know it.

Thomas Lyman:

Thomas J. Lyman, who earned his degree in Journalism from Georgia State University in 2006, is a motorsport junkie. His childhood road racing aspirations led him to earn his SCCA Racing License in 2005. Just two years later, while in his first full competitive season, Thomas won seven out of the 12 races he entered. He also earned eight pole positions, set a track record in Nashville, captured a SCCA Southeast Division Championship, and won the 2007 SCCA Atlanta Region Rookie of the Year award. Lyman accomplished all of this while simultaneously working as Associate Editor at Super Chevy magazine.

Moving up a class and series in 2008, Lyman won in just his fourth start of the season in SCCA National competition and secured yet another track record, this time at Carolina Motorsports Park. Unfortunately, with the economic collapse hitting his principal sponsor extremely hard, he was forced to pull out of competition in the middle of the year. After assessing his racing prospects, Lyman decided to enter law school in the hopes of racing on his own terms one day. Thomas just recently finished his first year of studies, and continues to write for publications such as 0-60 Magazine, Atlanta Magazine and Modified Magazine on a freelance basis.

-source: www.vwmotorsportusa.com

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About this article
Series SCCA
Drivers Tommy Hayden , Kenny Roberts Jr. , Roger Lee Hayden , Freddie Spencer