It’s pretty much a certainty that hip-hop legend MC Hammer will be bragging “U Can’t Touch This” to all his friends after Sunday’s Grand Prix of Sonoma.
Hammer will serve both as Grand Marshal for the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season-ending and championship-deciding event. Not only will he give the command to drivers to start their engines, he’ll also be sitting behind another legend – Mario Andretti – in the special two-seat Honda Indy car as they bring the field to the green flag start.
“I’m looking forward to an exciting day at IndyCar’s championship race at Sonoma Raceway,” Hammer said in a Sonoma Raceway media release. Hammer was also a celebrity guest during June’s NASCAR race at the racetrack located about 30 miles north of San Francisco.
The San Francisco Bay area native has sold more than 50 million records worldwide and has won three Grammy Awards, as well as eight American Music Awards, a People’s Choice Award and is the first hip-hop artist to win the Billboard Diamond Award.
Hammer, who was born Stanley Burrell and was a former batboy for Major League Baseball’s Oakland A’s in the early 1970s before beginning his music career, is a big sports fan and regularly attends A’s, Golden State Warriors and Oakland Raiders games.
It’s likely he’ll add being a new IndyCar fan to that list after Sunday.
This Saturday, the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles will debut a new exhibit honoring one of the most successful teams in American motorsports.
Titled “Chip Ganassi Racing: Fast Tracks to Success | 30th Anniversary Tribute,” the exhibit will display several significant cars, trophies, and other artifacts from CGR’s storied racing history. Ganassi will formally be honored April 15, 2020 at the Petersen’s Annual Racers Night before the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.
Vehicles displayed in the exhibit will include the 1983 Patrick Wildcat MK9B raced by Chip Ganassi to his best finish in the Indianapolis 500, the Lexus-powered Riley MK X1 raced by Scott Dixon in the 2006 24 Hours of Daytona, the Dallara IR-05 driven to victory by Dario Franchitti in the 2010 Indianapolis 500, the Ford GT that finished first in the LM GTE category at the 2016 24 Hours of Le Mans, and the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 driven by Kurt Busch in the 2019 NASCAR Cup Series.
“Chip Ganassi is an influential member of the automotive community, and his team’s penchant for success is a reflection of his raw skill and passion for the sport,” said Petersen Automotive Museum Executive Director Terry L. Karges. “Complemented by a visually dynamic and compelling 180-degree video, ‘Chip Ganassi Racing’will celebrate the team’s victories and tell its story while taking visitors on a trip down memory lane.”
“Chip Ganassi Racing: Fast Tracks to Success | 30th Anniversary Tribute” will run through January 31, 2021. The museum will host a ticketed opening reception on December 13. More information on the Petersen Museum can be found at www.petersen.org.