November 25, 2010 (Toronto) – Tickets to the 2011 Honda Indy Toronto are now on sale to the general public, a full eight months before the flagship event is set to take place. Owners of the event, which marks the 25th year of Indy car racing on the streets of Toronto, wanted to afford customers the chance to purchase tickets well in advance for special occasions, birthdays, milestones or as a holiday gift.
“We’re focused on making the Honda Indy Toronto accessible, entertaining and sustainable,” said Kevin Savoree, co-owner of the Honda Indy Toronto. “The Honda Indy Toronto is a must-attend event that provides memories for life. Offering tickets and race details in advance will help people make plans around the event.”
The event takes place from July 8-10, with prices ranging from $30 for Saturday general admission to $423 for gold seating in the Lake Shore Lounge for the entire weekend. For a full list of prices, or to purchase tickets, visit hondaindytoronto.com/tickets or call 1-877-503-6869.
Celebrating 25 years of racing
The 2011 edition of the Honda Indy Toronto will mark 25 years of racing on the streets of Toronto. In 2009, Honda Canada Inc. took on title sponsorship of the event, marking a racing renaissance in Toronto, however the city has seen the world’s best drivers compete on the 11-turn, 2.84km street circuit at Exhibition Place since 1986. Many accomplished drivers have raced in Toronto, such as Bobby Rahal, winner of the inaugural race; Michael Andretti, all time race win leader with seven victories at Toronto; and Paul Tracy, hometown hero and two-time winner at Toronto.
The Honda Indy Toronto revealed today a commemorative logo to celebrate 25 years of racing in Toronto. The new logo was voted on by fans online through the event’s website, hondaindytoronto.com. In early October, organizers of the event posted four variations of the logo online and called upon its website visitors to vote on their favourite. The commemorative logo features the traditional Honda Indy Toronto branding alongside a graphic of the monumental Princes’ Gates at Exhibition Place with the words “Celebrate 25 Years of Racing” inscribed underneath.
“The fans have spoken and we feel they made the right decision,” said Charlie Johnstone, vice-president and general manager of Honda Indy Toronto. “This logo embodies the spirit of the race and we hope it will help get fans excited for the upcoming event.”
November 10, 2010 (Toronto) – The Honda Indy Toronto, taking place from July 8-10, will feature an exciting and diverse race schedule in 2011. In celebration of 25 years of racing on the streets of Toronto, Ontario’s single largest annual sporting event will feature the highest levels of Indy, stock, touring and, for the first time, exotic car racing.
The marquee attraction continues to be the IZOD IndyCar Series with its lineup of popular drivers including Dario Franchitti, series champion and winner of the 2010 Indy 500; Will Power, winner of the 2010 Honda Indy Toronto; Helio Castroneves and Scott Dixon, past winners of the Indy 500; Marco Andretti, son of Michael Andretti, driver with the most wins in Toronto; Danica Patrick, as well as Graham Rahal, son of Bobby Rahal, winner of the inaugural Indy car race in Toronto in 1986.
“Fans appreciate diversity, accessibility and quality in our weekend schedule,” said Charlie Johnstone, vice president and general manager for Honda Indy Toronto. “We could not hope for a better lineup to celebrate 25 years of racing on the streets of Toronto.”
Returning races include the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, Firestone Indy Lights and the Acura Sports Car Challenge that will feature the Canadian Touring Car Championship. An exciting new addition will be the debut of the Ferrari Challenge, a unique racing series that allows Ferrari owners and enthusiasts to see the legendary cars in their natural environment – the race track. This is the first year the Toronto event has featured an exotic car race.
“The Ferrari Challenge is a premium series with universal appeal,” said Kim Green, co-owner of Green Savoree Toronto, ULC, promoters of the Honda Indy Toronto. “Its addition to our schedule speaks volumes to the prestige and heritage of this Toronto hallmark event.”
July 14, 2010. It’s been one month since Calgary’s Jarrad Whissell and the #44 SMS Equipment/Komatsu Ford team last competed in the 2010 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series. But since then the excitement has been building for their debut on the streets of Exhibition Place this Saturday afternoon during the Toronto Indy weekend.
This is the first time the NASCAR Canadian Tire series has been part of the schedule at the Toronto Indy and Whissell is excited to participate in the inaugural event. “This race weekend has a great history and the track layout should make for very exciting racing” said the driver. “The long Lakeshore straightaway leading into the tight right hand turn three will be especially interesting to watch” he added.
The month long layoff has allowed the #44 SMS Equipment/Komatsu Ford team the opportunity to repair their damaged race car from the last event. “We had some trouble at the last event” explained Whissell. “I got the car out of shape, we went off course and touched the wall, but the real problem was a small fire that occurred. Not only did we have to replace parts but all of the wires along with all the plastic and rubber pieces have been replaced as a precaution” he concluded.
Despite the setback Whissell is optimistic about this weekend. “Bill Burns did a great job putting the car back together and before we had our troubles the #44 SMS Equipment/Komatsu Ford was fast and very well balanced. We’ll definitely be good right from the start this weekend” said the enthusiastic driver.
Though it will be his first time on the eleven turn temporary street circuit in Toronto that is surrounded by concrete barriers Whissell looks forward to the challenge. “I’ve raced at Trois Rivieres so I understand the walls around you” said the driver. “I’ve also watched some video of old CASCAR series races to help get a feel of what to expect” he added.
This weekend’s race will also be broadcast live on TSN and TSN HD, a first for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series. “I think everyone is very excited about this event being live from coast to coast” said Whissell. “It really shows that NASCAR has grown this series very quickly and the demand is there to see the races live” he added.
The #44 SMS Equipment/Komatsu Ford team is raising funds for research into a cure for Multiple Sclerosis this season. Support of that cause also goes beyond the race team explained the driver. “Each year Whissell Contracting holds a BBQ for employees and their families. This year we set up a dunk tank and the proceeds raised are also going to help MS research” explained Jarred Whissell.
Whissell not only set up the dunk tank, but participated. “Yes I got dunked a few times and even though the temperature was about 17C it was worth it” smiled Whissell. “I also have to thank the three companies that matched all the money we raised for MS, Lafarge, Renfrew Insurance and Mike Vail Trucking. It helped bring our total to $900 and of course half of our winnings this weekend also go to the cause. Fans can go to our website www.jarradwhissell.com to help out too” he added.
The five NASCAR Canadian Tire Series road course events are a part of some of the largest race weekends in Canada and also include the Toronto & Edmonton Indy’s and Montreal Nationwide race weekend. Follow the progress of the team and help support Multiple Sclerosis research through the soon to be launched website www.jarradwhissell.com You can watch all of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series races again this year on TSN. This weekend’s race on Saturday July 17th can be seen live on TSN and TSN HD beginning at 2:30PM Eastern.
Pjoto by Gary Grant. Whissell turns in to Mosport’s infamous turn 2.
Back in the Molson Indy days, the Toronto Indy pretty much took over the city with parties and events. There was a buzz everywhere and just about everyone was talking about the Indy. Charlie Johnstone and the rest of the Honda Indy Toronto team have planned a week full of activities to build that buzz once again.
“This year’s edition of the Honda Indy Toronto is clearly setting a new bar in Canada in terms of on and off-track entertainment,” said Charlie Johnstone, general manager and vice president of Honda Indy Toronto. “The combination of athletes, cars, music and loads of interactive activities is second to none.”
The action begins today at noon at Toronto’s exciting Yonge – Dundas Square with the Honda Canada Media Pit Stop Challenge. Members of local media will battle for bragging rights as the fastest tire changing crew. Paul Tracy will be on hand from 12 to 1 pm.
At 5 pm, the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series Autograph Session takes over Yonge-Dundas Square. Fans can meet all the series drivers including JR Fitzpatrick, Andrew Ranger, Jason Bowles and Ontario’s Caitlin Johnston.
Alex Tagliani will reveal the #77 Hot Wheels Indy car at Yonge-Dundas Square from 12:30 till 2.
From 5 to 6 pm, fans can meet Paul Tracy, Alex Tagliani and Canadian Indy Lights driver James Hinchcliffe for an autograph session at The Bay Queen Street.
For the second year in a row, Shoot For A Cure teams up with the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation for the Honda Indy Toronto Walk Run ‘N Wheel-a-thon in support of spinal cure research. Participants and families will have the opportunity to do a 5km run, and a 2.8km walk and wheel to the finish line on the IndyCar circuit.
Thursday evening from 6 to 8 is the big party. The official IZOD Indycar street party will be hosted by Jamie Little and Matte Babel who will be joined by Indycar drivers. LA based Rival Sons will perform and the Great Canadian pit stop challenge will pit Canadian racers Paul Tracy and Alex Tagliani against each other. Just like in hockey, this will be a classic battle of Toronto vs. Montreal. The location for this one has not been revealed yet, but we’ll let you know when it is.
Moving uptown, the Canadian launch of the new TW Steel “Dario Franchitti Edition” Watch will take place at LA SWISS in the Yorkdale Shopping Mall at 8 pm.
At 8:30, Alex Tagliani and Paul Tracy are hosting the IZOD IndyCar Series Race to the Party After-Party, featuring the stars and legends of the series including Danica Patrick, Helio Castroneves, Marco Andretti, Tony Kanaan, Will Power, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Al Unser Jr. and Gil deFerran. Red carpet entrance is at 8:30 pm. This one is at Dolce Social Ballroom, 647 King St.
Maybe the biggest news of the week is that general admission is free thanks to the Ontario Honda Dealers association. Not only can everyone get in free, but grandstands are free too, meaning that fans can get a taste of the best seats in the house before deciding what ticket to buy for the rest of the weekend.
To get your tickets in advance, visit Honda Indy Toronto. You can also buy your tickets at the gate.
Canadian Tire has a long history of supporting racing in Canada and today they’ve announced major plans to step their involvement up several notches. Already in their fourth year as title sponsor of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, they have just signed on as an official sponsor of both the Honda Indy Toronto and Honda Indy Edmonton events.
In addition, while the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series runs as a support event for the Nationwide Series at Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, the company has added another nice surprise for Canadian’s on that weekend. Canadian racing star Ron Fellows will race the #88 Chevy Impala in the Nationwide race with Canadian Tire Sponsorship. More
TORONTO, June 3 /CNW/ – To help racing fans and those new to the sport enjoy the speed, sound and excitement of IndyCar racing, the Ontario Honda Dealers Association (OHDA) is underwriting the cost for admission to the Friday session (July 16) for the 2010 Honda Indy Toronto at Exhibition Place.
“We are very pleased to make this opportunity available to everyone in Ontario and beyond,” said Jim Proskos, owner of Cobourg Honda, speaking on behalf of the OHDA. “For anyone who has never seen open wheel racing up close and personal, we encourage them to take advantage of this no-cost opportunity to see some of the world’s top race drivers tackling the streets of Toronto. We will be asking fans to donate their spare change when they enter the gates to help make the wishes come true for our Canadian children who are faced with life-threatening medical conditions.”
“This is one of the most significant initiatives in the history of the event for the community at large,” said Charlie Johnstone, vice president and general manager of the Honda Indy Toronto. “To have free access to a world class event is unprecedented and wouldn’t be possible without the generous support of the Ontario Honda Dealers Association. For this we are truly grateful.”
The OHDA-sponsored “Free Friday” on July 16 is designed to expose the thrill of open wheel racing to anyone interested. The Friday cash donations at the gates will support of Make-A-Wish(R) Canada, the charity sponsor of Canadian Paul Tracy and his No.15 Make-A-Wish(R) Canada/KV Racing Technology/Honda/Dallara/Firestone car.
There will be no reserved seats on Friday (except for designated corporate suites), so fans can select any seats on a first-come/first-served basis, even in the Gold and Silver sections around the track.
The racing series that will be competing during the Honda Indy Toronto race weekend include the IZOD IndyCar Series, Firestone Indy Lights Series, NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, Acura Sports Car Challenge, Castrol Canadian Touring Car Championship, and the SCCA Pro Racing Trans-Am Series.
In addition to the open wheel and stock car racing series, there will be numerous activities including the ‘Auto Expo’ featuring fine cars and a variety of racecars, Budweiser Beer Gardens, driver and celebrity autograph sessions, Pizza Pizza ‘Family Zone, the race paddock, interactive games and exhibits, live music, stunt teams, ‘Thunder Alley,’ and a variety of displays and merchandise.
Honda Canada will again feature its unique Honda World in the Direct Energy Centre with racing simulators and a full complement of cars and trucks, including the all-new Honda CR-Z two-seat sports hybrid coming to Canada late this summer.
The Honda Indy Toronto, scheduled for July 16-18. It will be the second IndyCar Series race run in Toronto and marks the 10th race of the 2010 IndyCar Series season. Tickets for the Honda Indy Toronto are available at www.HondaIndyToronto.com. Ticket information is also available by calling 877.503.6869.
About the Ontario Honda Dealers Association:
The Ontario Honda Dealers Association, which was founded in 1989, represents 78 Honda dealers located in 62 communities throughout Ontario, which is home to the two Honda of Canada Mfg. assembly plants that produce Civic, Canada’s number one selling car, in addition to the Acura MDX, ZDX and CSX. The 78 Honda dealerships in Ontario, which have a proven track record for providing maximum customer satisfaction, employ approximately 3,000 associates.
About Honda Indy Toronto:
The Honda Indy Toronto takes place from July 16 to 18 on the streets surrounding Exhibition Place near Lake Ontario and downtown Toronto. With more than two decades of open wheel racing history in Toronto, the Honda Indy Toronto is among the most respected motorsports events in North America and features a festival-like atmosphere that includes the fastest racing series on the planet, celebrity athletes and three action-packed days of live entertainment and interactive activities.
Toronto, ON (May 25, 2010) – Canadian Paul Tracy’s KV Racing Technology car will be sponsored by Honda Canada for a second year, and will support Make-A-Wish Canada, at the Honda Indy Toronto, July 18, on the streets of Toronto.
Tracy, the 2003 Champ Car World Series champion, is one of the most successful and exciting drivers in the history of open-wheel racing. The native of Scarborough, Ontario, will pilot the #15 Make-A-Wish Canada / KV Racing Technology / Honda / Dallara / Firestone car.
“Honda is a company built on the dreams of its founder and all of its Associates, which is why Honda’s corporate slogan is The Power of Dreams,” said Arch Wilcox, vice president of advertising and sponsorships. “It’s the power of dreams that has led us to innovations and new technologies over the years. We are very pleased to be associated with Make-A-Wish Canada which is helping to turn the wishes and dreams of Canadian children living with life-threatening medical conditions into a reality.
“We believe Make-A-Wish Canada and Honda Canada are a perfect fit because of our shared belief in and pursuit of the power of dreams.”
Commenting on the support, Jennifer Ritter, CEO of Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Canada, said, “Because of this generous support, we will be able to promote awareness of our vital mission and to continue to fulfill the dreams of our courageous ‘wish children’ across Canada.
“Make-A-Wish exists for one reason only – to grant wishes to children living with life-threatening medical conditions. We impact our wish families’ lives at a time when they need to know that their community cares about what they are going through, as their child battles for his or her life.
“To a child living with a life-threatening medical condition, a wish is more than a desire – it is an experience that can create a life-changing impact, not only for the wish child and their family, but for other families, friends, volunteers, donors and entire communities. We believe that Make-A-Wish, through our mission, volunteers and supporters, is helping to nurture a kind and caring Canada.”
According to KV Racing Technology co-owner Jimmy Vasser, “We are extremely pleased that Paul Tracy will pilot a KV Racing Technology entry with sponsorship from Honda Canada in support of Make-A-Wish Canada. Having Paul drive in front of his countrymen with an organization like Make-A-Wish Canada on the sidepods of a KVRT car is an honor and a privilege. I personally want to thank Honda Canada for making this possible.”
Tracy, whose talent and determination have made him a fan favorite, will be contesting his 18th race in Toronto. In 17 previous starts on the streets of Toronto he has finished in the top-10 a total of 11 times with eight top-five showings, five podium performances, two wins (1993 and 2003) and one pole.
“I want to thank Honda Canada, Kevin Kalkhoven and Jimmy Vasser for the opportunity to race in front of my hometown fans,” Tracy said. “I am especially thankful because it is a tremendous honor to represent Make-A-Wish Canada. I am proud to be able to support and raise awareness for this organization that assists Canada’s children in need of wishes coming true.”
Now in his 20th season, Tracy has crafted a career that has established him as one of the top drivers ever to step into the cockpit of an open-wheel car. The resident of Las Vegas is among the top-10 in almost every Champ Car career statistical category including wins, 31 (tied for seventh all-time), poles, 25 (ninth all-time), and laps led, 4,238 (sixth all-time).
Tracy has 75 career podium performances, 102 top-five finishes and 144 top-10 showings in 270 starts (262 in Champ Car and eight in IndyCar, tied for seventh all-time). In the 15 seasons in which Tracy has competed in over 80 percent of the races, he has finished in the top-10 in the championship standings 10 times including eight times in the top-five, four in the top-three and captured the championship in 2003.
About Honda Canada Inc.:
Honda Canada (www.Honda.ca) has sold more than 3,300,000 Honda and Acura passenger cars and light-duty trucks in Canada over the past 38 years. A record high 91 per cent of the Honda and Acura vehicles sold in Canada last year were produced at the company’s assembly plants in North America, up nearly 3 per cent from the previous year. In addition, 52 per cent of all Honda and Acura vehicles sold in Canada last year were built at the two Honda of Canada Mfg. plants in Alliston, Ontario, which has built more than 5,300,000 Honda and Acura cars and trucks since 1986.
About Make-A-Wish Canada:
Make-A-Wish Canada (www.makeawish.ca) is a dynamic wish-granting organization that brings hope, strength and joy to children across Canada living with life-threatening medical conditions. Along with the national office, seven independent regional chapters grant magical wishes to children in need from coast-to-coast. Make-A-Wish Canada is an affiliate of Make-A-Wish® International, the largest wish-granting organization in the world, making dreams and wishes come true for more than 240,000 children since 1980.
About KV Racing Technology:
KV Racing Technology (www.kvracingtechnology.com) was established in 2003. The Indianapolis-based team is contesting its eighth open-wheel season and third in the IndyCar Series in 2010. KVRT is owned by successful venture capitalist Kevin Kalkhoven and 1996 Series Champion, Jimmy Vasser. Veteran motorsports manager Mark Johnson is the team’s General Manager. KVRT has earned two victories the first by Cristiano da Matta in Portland in 2005 and the second by Will Power at Long Beach in 2008. They have captured two poles, Tristan Gommendy at Mont Tremblant in 2007 and Vasser at Milwaukee in 2005 (Will Power captured the pole at the 2008 Surfers Paradise, Australia exhibition race).
KV Racing has contested five races, making nine starts in Toronto. They have finished in the top-10 a total of three times, with three top-five showing, two podiums and a best finish of second by Vasser in 2004 and Neel Jani in 2007. The team has participated in all four races in Edmonton making eight starts. They have finished in the top-10 a total of three times with two top-five showing and a best finish of fourth by Oriol Servia in 2006.
May 20, 2010 (Toronto) – A business model comprising the fastest racing series on the planet, celebrity athletes and three action-packed days of live entertainment and interactive activities is a winning formula. That’s what Kim Green and Kevin Savoree believed when they secured the rights to the Honda Indy Toronto. They were spot on. In year two of their ownership, the 2010 Honda Indy Toronto has successfully attracted more than 15 major sponsors and secured significant growth in sponsorship revenues versus last year.
“Several factors are coming together to help us attract leading partners,” said Charlie Johnstone, vice president and general manager of the Honda Indy Toronto. “Sponsors from the private and public sector are recognizing our status as the largest annual sporting event in Ontario and are looking to associate their brands with such a marquee property.”
Honda has maintained its status as title sponsor and is followed by a long list of leading companies that includes the Ontario Honda Dealers Association, Budweiser, Schick, Telus, Motorola, Dr Pepper, Mattel Canada, Pizza Pizza, Delta Chelsea Hotel and the Toronto Sun. The Ontario Government and Tourism Toronto are also important supporters of the event.
“Our sponsorship of the Honda Indy Toronto reflects numerous aspects of our business and benefits several audience groups,” said Arch Wilcox, vice president of advertising for Honda Canada. “We like the event very much and feel that it mirrors many of Honda’s values.”
The Honda Indy Toronto is the largest annual sporting event in Ontario and is watched by viewers in more than 195 countries.
About Honda Indy Toronto
The 24th edition of the Honda Indy Toronto takes place from July 16 to 18 on the streets surrounding Exhibition Place near Lake Ontario and downtown Toronto. The event has become one of the most respected motorsports events in North America and features a festival-like atmosphere that includes concerts, exhibits, numerous food stands and interactive activities and games for all ages. For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.HondaIndyToronto.com or call 877.503.6869.