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DATE News (chronologically)
05/19/08
irl
IndyCar Series Drivers to Participate in "Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix Night"  Just days before competing in the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing,” two of the brightest stars in open-wheel racing will visit the Motor City to celebrate Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix Night at Comerica Park with the Detroit Tigers baseball club. Oriol Servia and Will Power of the KV Racing Technology IndyCar Series team, will participate in the evening’s festivities on Tuesday, May 20 as the Tigers play host to the Seattle Mariners in a 7:05 p.m. contest.  Both Servia and Power will be in town to promote the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix – August 29-31, 2008 – just a few days before competing in the 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 25.

Servia and Power will sign autographs for fans at Comerica Park prior to the game. In addition, both drivers will be introduced to the crowd on the field in pre-game ceremonies before Power throws out the ceremonial first pitch. Both Servia and Power will be available for media interviews before staying to enjoy some Tiger baseball that evening. Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix show cars will be on display during the game and fans will have the opportunity to win free tickets to the Grand Prix throughout the evening.

While Servia is new to the IndyCar Series, he’s certainly not a rookie when it comes to racing at Belle Isle. The 33-year-old native of Catalonia has raced twice at Belle Isle Park, in the Champ Car Series, with a top finish of third in the 2000 Detroit Grand Prix.

“I have some very good memories about the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix because it was my first podium finish in Champ Cars back in 2000,” said Servia, who qualified 25th for Sunday’s Indy 500. “I remember it was a very good place to race and that the track is very challenging. Overall, I have a lot of good memories from Detroit and I hope to be able to add to them by making the podium again or even doing better this year.”

Power, the 2006 Champ Car World Series Rookie of the Year, will be making his first start on the 2.1-mile Belle Isle street circuit later this summer. The 27-year-old Australian driver is an accomplished road racer that’s recorded three career open-wheel victories including an impressive win in April at the annual Grand Prix of Long Beach.

“I am honored to have the opportunity to throw out the first pitch at the Tigers game,” said Power, who will start 23rd Sunday in his first Indy 500. “Being an Australian I have played cricket so I can throw a ball, but doing it in front of so many people is going to be more nerve-racking than driving my race car. I don’t mind everyone having a good laugh when I throw the first pitch, but I really don’t want to completely embarrass myself, so I have been practicing a bit behind the hospitality unit at the track in Indy throwing a ball against a brick wall.”

Fans interested in attending Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix Night at Comerica Park on May 20 should visit www.detroittigers.com to purchase tickets or call (866) 66-TIGER.

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