IndyCar »

Schmidt, Luczo help charitable causes at Indy.


Two charitable organisations have taken advantage of the Indianapolis 500 to raise awareness of their causes by partnering two of the more intriguing entries in the race.

That the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation should choose to make use of Alex Lloyd's impressive qualifying performance is no surprise given that the Briton is being run by Sam Schmidt Motorsports, but crew members will do their best to make sure that the cause is recognised by tying in with the lurid colours being sported by the #99.

All team members have already donned pink overalls this month to coincide with the team's HER Energy drink sponsorship, but will now dye their hair pink for the 500 to raise money for team owner Sam Schmidt's charity. For every $10,000 pledged to the charity, one team member will dye his hair.

"We've gotten a lot of attention with our programme this month, and we felt we should centre some of that positive attention towards a good cause," Schmidt said, "We have pink suits and a pink car, so we may as well go all the way and dye our hair pink."

Meanwhile, the Luczo Dragon team has attracted the might of NBA star Shaquille O'Neal to raise money and awareness for charity through the remainder of the 2009 IndyCar Series.

By partnering with champion athletes each year, co-owners Steve Luczo and Jay Penske have established a unique charity drive that has delivered more than $1m to charitable organisations worldwide in two years. With the US Air Force and US Marine Corps as their primary partners on the car in 2009, much of the team's charitable focus will turn to organisations that support fallen heroes and their families. Basketball Hall of Famer O'Neal, meanwhile, has made it his mission to work with children and families in need.

"We are proud to have Shaquille join our team of champions," Luczo said, "Shaq has demonstrated that leadership, competitiveness, winning and compassion can all be achieved at the same time. As one of the most recognised champions in sports, and as a positive role model through his many community and social efforts, Shaq is the ideal individual to help Luczo Dragon Racing further its success. On top of that, his father is a military veteran, which is particularly relevant to our expanded mission of supporting wounded and fallen soldiers and their families."

The four-time NBA champion and 15-time All Star is keen to get his message across following the tie-up.

"I believe in giving, and I am thrilled to be joining forces with the Luczo Dragon Racing team," O'Neal said, "My parents taught me at a young age that my goals, are and should be, more than just about the things I want to personally accomplish. Therefore, giving to others has given me a deeper sense of accomplishment and fulfilment. Everyone has a passion - it could be any number of things: animals, education, AIDS research, cancer...

"My passion is our most precious resource, children. That is why I support charity organisations that focus on children including Kids Athletic Foundation and the Boys and Girls Club of America on a regular basis. There is no excuse for not giving. If you don't have money, you still can support by volunteering your time. Take it from me, we all win when we take the focus off of ourselves and support others."


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Indy Racing League. 9 May 2009. Pole Day. Indianapolis 500. Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Indianapois, Indiana. Alex Lloyd.
Santiago Urrutia - Schmidt Petersen Motorsport
Mikhail Aleshin - Schmidt Peterson Motorsports   [pic credit: Indycar Media/Chris Owens]
Mikhail Aleshin - Schmidt Peterson Motorsports   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Chris Owens]
Mikhail Aleshin - Schmidt Peterson Motorsports   [pic credit: Indycar Media/Chris Jones]
James Hinchcliffe - Schmidt Peterson Motorsports   [pic credit: IndyCar Media/Chris Jones]
James Hinchcliffe - Schmidt Peterson [credit: Chris Owens]
Alex Rossi, Indy 500 [Credit: IndyCar]
James Hinchcliffe - Schmidt Peterson [Credit: IndyCar]
James Hinchcliffe - Schmidt Peterson [Credit: Jim Haines/IndyCar]
Juan Pablo Montoya, driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6 takes the chequered flag to victory Sunday, March 13, 2016 during the Verizon IndyCar Series Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in St. Petersburg, Florida. It is the second year in a row Montoya has won this race. (Photo by Sam Cobb/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, celebrates after qualifying fastest Saturday, August 29, 2015, capturing the pole position for Sunday`s Verizon IndyCar Series race at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California. Power, the 2014 Champion Driver, has an outside chance to repeat during this final race of the season. (Photo by Sam Cobb/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Jack Harvey, IndyCar, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports [Credit: Driven Comms]
Sebastien Bourdais, driver of the #11 Hydroxycut - KVSH Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory with his son Alex and daughter Emma Sunday, July12, 2015 after winning the Verizon IndyCar Series race at The Milwaukee Mile in West Allis, Wisconsin. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Briscoe steps into the #5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsport Honda in place of the injured James Hinchcliffe. Indianapolis Motor Speedway, May 21 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2016 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.