Photo: Jonathan Byrd's Racing

KVSH Racing partnering with Jonathan Byrd’s Racing for 2015 Indy 500


A familiar Verizon IndyCar Series team will help Jonathan Byrd’s Racing in its return to the Indianapolis 500 next year.

KVSH Racing has confirmed that they’ll partner with the Byrd’s camp in fielding a car at the 2015 Indy for short-track powerhouse and former ‘500’ starter Bryan Clauson.

“When we first began discussions for this entry with the Byrd family, what came to mind was the campaign the Indianapolis Motor Speedway recently launched: ‘We all have a story,’ KVSH partner James “Sulli” Sullivan said in a team release.

“The Byrd’s have a storied history at the Speedway and we’re pleased to announce today they’ll be returning with KVSH Racing to start the next chapter of the Jonathan Byrd’s Racing story. We are excited to add another Indy 500 entry to the 2015 KVSH Racing lineup and stoked to have Bryan Clauson as our wheel man.

“I also think it is interesting to note that one of my partners, [team co-owner] Jimmy Vasser, was sponsored by Jonathan Byrd for his second Indy 500, so we have come full circle.”

Speaking on behalf of the Byrd family, David Byrd said that the addition of KVSH to his team’s program was “simply phenomenal.”

“The fact that we have our program in place a year in advance with what we hope is a long-term home for the Jonathan Byrd’s team, and to know that we are going to be able to provide Bryan with all of the resources he needs to win the 500 – I don’t think our family could ask for much more,” he said.

“It’s amazing to have a driver like Bryan put his faith in us to deliver for him and to stake his IndyCar future with us, and we are grateful to Kevin [Kalkhoven], Jimmy, Sulli, and the KVSH team for the opportunity to build with them.”

The Jonathan Byrd’s Racing name has not been seen in the ‘500’ since 2005, when it partnered with Panther Racing to field a car for 1996 Indy winner Buddy Lazier.

Today’s release stated that a testing schedule for Clauson is in development and will be announced when finalized.

“We have a lot of great things happening at Jonathan Byrd’s Racing, and aligning ourselves with KVSH Racing, a team which has competed many times at Indy and won the race, is a big step forward for our program,” said the multi-time USAC champion.

“KVSH knows firsthand what it takes to run up front at Indy, and having Jimmy Vasser there to lean on is going to be a huge bonus for me. I can’t wait to get to work.”

NHRA: Alexis DeJoria brings free mammograms to Texas, Las Vegas races

DeJoria pink race car for breast cancer awareness month
(Photo courtesy Alexis DeJoria Racing)
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Some drivers see red when they’re behind the wheel of a 300-mph Funny Car.

But NHRA Funny Car driver Alexis DeJoria is seeing pink in the month of October – and she’s proud of it.

DeJoria, who owns Alexis DeJoria Racing and drives the Tequila Patron Toyota for Kalitta Racing, is using the color pink to call attention to breast cancer awareness month in October.

DeJoria has partnered with Baylor Healthcare Systems to offer free mammograms to race fans attending this weekend’s AAA Fall Nationals at Texas Motorplex (Friday and Saturday) in Ennis, Texas.

She’ll reprise that role, partnering with Nevada Health Centers for the Toyota Nationals at The Strip in Las Vegas Oct. 30-31.

According to a media release, ‘”Mammovans’ (mobile mammography units) will be parked in the nitro pits of the racetracks, and free mammograms will be available on-site during both weekends to female ticketholders over the age of 40, regardless of whether or not they have health insurance.”

Those who seek to be screened do not need an appointment or referral. If you have health insurance, bring your insurance information to the race. Test results will be sent via mail approximately ten days after the event.

This year’s initiative continues a program DeJoria began three years ago when she launched the “Free Mammograms for the Fans” program.

Also, DeJoria will drive a hot pink race car in both events.

“I really want to thank the Patrón Spirits Company and Toyota for their support, as well as Kalitta Motorsports, everyone who bought items on our eBay fundraising page, purchased our pink Fight Like a Girl bracelets and made donations,” said DeJoria. “It all goes toward this very wonderful life-saving cause and we would not be able to provide this service to our fans without their support.”

Added Ed Laukes, vice president of marketing, performance and guest experience for Toyota Motor Sales USA, “If we are able to save the life of so much as one mother, daughter, sister, wife or friend, it will be well worth our additional investment in our partners at DeJoria (Alexis DeJoria Racing). It truly is rewarding to be able to assist one of our race teams on a program that is so meaningful to so many people.”

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Sir Stirling Moss: Enclosed cockpits in open-wheel racing ‘ridiculous’

Sir Stirling Moss Getty
(Getty Images)
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While IndyCar mulls some type of enclosed cockpits or canopies in their race cars as early as 2017 to enhance driver safety, one racing legend scoffs at the notion that open-wheel racing should go down that path.

“I think it’s ridiculous,” Sir Stirling Moss told Road and Track at the recent Lime Rock Historic Festival. “Motor racing is dangerous. And one does it – some of us do it – because it is dangerous. I was one of those. And I think to go and put forward things like that is absolutely ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous.”

MORE: IndyCar CEO: No safety changes for 2016 car, despite Wilson death

It’s the opinion of the 85-year-old Moss that safety elements in one form of open-wheel racing – namely, Formula 1 – are as good as they can be at the moment.

“I think quite honestly, most events have good flag marshaling, which is very important,” Moss said. “The drivers know what they can do and they usually stick within their realistic limits.

“But of course, obviously, the sort of racing and etiquette you have on a circuit like this, or, a club circuit, is necessarily pretty different when you start talking Formula One.

“But, I think (danger) is part of the sport. I don’t think anybody wants to get hurt, but they’re all going to push themselves up to their limit, and that’s pretty good.”

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