Ryan Hunter-Reay's #21 Vision Racing Dallara appeared in a fresh new livery for Carb Day, following confirmation that Phillips-Van Heusen brand IZOD would become the American's primary sponsor for both the Indianapolis 500 and Milwaukee Mile IndyCar events.
Last year's Indy 500 rookie of the year, Hunter-Reay is already an official IZOD 'spokesperson' - having appeared on a massive NYC billboard during the 2008 campaign - and prompted questions from fans asking why the brand would not back him when it appeared he could miss out on the 2009 season. Now, albeit for a couple of events, the two parties have been reunited in the biggest possible way.
"We are thrilled to be expanding our role with Ryan and the IndyCar Series," executive VP of marketing Mike Kelly commented, ""Partnering with Vision Racing as the primary sponsor for the #21 car was a natural evolution in our ongoing involvement with IndyCar racing. We're excited to see the IZOD brand being driven on the most historic track in auto racing this weekend at the Indy 500."
That relationship started last July, when IZOD became the official clothing brand of the IndyCar Series, Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Firestone Indy Lights. As the official sponsor, the IZOD team designed custom uniforms for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Indy Racing League, inspired by the uniquely American heritage of IndyCar racing and, in celebration of the centennial of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Indy 500, launched a collection of vintage, race-inspired and modern performance clothing commemorating the anniversary. Earlier this month, IZOD also rolled out the black-and-white chequered carpet in New York City to welcome the historic In Pursuit of FAST: 100 Years of Indy Racing, Fashion and Design
exhibition to Macy's Herald Square.
"I couldn't be more excited to have IZOD as the primary sponsor of my car for the Indianapolis 500 and Milwaukee Mile," Hunter-Reay reciprocated, "Having my personal sponsor take a more prominent role in my team just reinforces the successful partnership we have together. I'm proud to be driving the #21 IZOD car for Vision Racing."