Luczo Dragon Racing to Enter Three IndyCar Races
After a top five finish in the Indianapolis 500 last season, Luczo Dragon Racing, LLC has a new driver, a veteran team manager, a three-race IRL schedule planned for the 2008 IndyCar season and will continue to donate its racing profits to charity, it was announced today.
IndyCar Series veteran Tomas Scheckter will drive the Dallara Honda in three races: the RoadRunner Turbo Indy 300 at Kansas Speedway April 27, the 92nd Indianapolis 500 May 25 and the Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma at Infineon Raceway August 24. The team will be managed by John Cummiskey, who has 19 years experience in open wheel racing, including one Indy 500 win. Scheckter has averaged 348 points and finished in the top 10 in each of the last three IndyCar seasons.
"We are thrilled to have Tomas driving for us and greatly value the experience John brings to our race team," Luczo Dragon co-owner Jay Penske said. "Tomas is one of the top drivers on the IndyCar circuit. His presence and ability will give us a chance to win in each of our three races. Add in John's leadership and we feel very good about the direction of our team."
Scheckter represents the third generation of drivers from the prominent Scheckter racing family from South Africa. He is the son of 1979 Formula One World Champion Jody Scheckter, who registered 10 Formula One wins, and the nephew of Ian Scheckter. Tomas started his racing career at age 11.
Scheckter had his first taste of a major championship as a teenager when he captured the South African Kart Championship in 1995. In 1996, he posted two wins in the South African Formula Ford Series before earning Rookie of the Year honors in the British Formula Vauxhall Junior series the following year. His most dominant season came in 1999, when he won the Formula Opel Euroseries championship with a record eight victories and eight poles, breaking all the winning records previously set by Mika Hakkinen, Rubens Barrichello, and David Coulthard.
Scheckter is a six year veteran of the IRL, has led over 150 laps at the Indianapolis 500, and was named Rookie of the Year there in 2002. He has entered the Indianapolis 500 in each of the last six years and has two top 10 finishes and one top five. He placed seventh in 2007 and finished fourth in 2003.
Cummiskey started his racing career in 1989 as a mechanic for Penske Racing and ultimately became chief mechanic in 1998. He was part of the 1991 Penske Team that claimed the Indy 500 title with Rick Mears driving. He served as chief mechanic for Team Green from 2000-2003 and has managed teams in each of the last four Indy 500 races.
"When we started assembling our team we were looking for leadership and championship experience and we have landed that with John," Luczo Dragon
co-owner Steve Luczo said. "He has worked with some of the top drivers in the world and has won at the highest level. We are fortunate to have him managing our race team."
In 2007, Luczo Dragon Racing entered the Indianapolis 500 for the first time and partnered with 12 celebrity athletes and entertainers to raise money for charitable causes. A fifth place finish helped generate more than $500,000 for charity.