Golfer's vodka brand to sponsor Ed Carpenter at Indy
Vision Racing is proud to confirm Indiana's own golf legend Fuzzy Zoeller's involvement as a supporter of the No.20 Dallara/ Honda/ Firestone entry, driven by Ed Carpenter for Panther Racing, by introducing Fuzzy's Ultra Premium Vodka as primary sponsor for the 2010 Indianapolis 500.
Known as one of the most fun loving personalities in the history of the game, Indiana native and professional golfer Fuzzy Zoeller entered into the spirits business in July 2009, launching his own ultra premium vodka which will be displayed on the No.20 livery for the "Greatest Spectacle in Racing", the famed Indianapolis 500, deepening the Indiana connection.
"I've won some majors in my golf career, and there is no doubt the Indianapolis 500 is the major championship in the world of motor racing," said Fuzzy Zoeller who has twelve tour victories on the PGA Tour and Champions Tour including the Masters, the U.S. Open and the Senior PGA Championship. "I am very excited about our partnership with Tony (George), Ed (Carpenter) and Panther Racing, and their deep ties to Indiana. I would love to add another major to my resume. Ed's resume on ovals is impressive, so we think we have a shot."
"This is an exciting development for us," said Vision Racing team owner Tony George. "The opportunity to have Fuzzy Zoeller be part of this collaboration between Panther Racing and Vision Racing, with sponsorship from Fuzzy's Ultra Premium Vodka really gives us the confidence we can go out and win. Fuzzy is a true champion and knows what it takes to win. I am very grateful to Fuzzy and all the many people who have come together to support this effort."
Panther Racing, who will field the No.20 along with their No.4 National Guard entry at the "500", boasts 15 IndyCar Series wins, two league championships and has also finished runner-up in each of the last two Indianapolis 500s; in 2008 with Vitor Meira and again last year with current team driver Dan Wheldon.
"It's an honor for both myself and Panther Racing to be able to partner with a Hoosier legend like Fuzzy Zoeller and have Fuzzy's Ultra Premium Vodka as the primary sponsor on the No.20 car," said John Barnes, Panther Racing CEO & Managing Partner. "Fuzzy's Ultra Premium Vodka has emerged as one of the fastest growing spirits on the market and now with the help of Vision Racing and a driver of Ed Carpenter's caliber they're going to have one of the fastest racecars in the Indianapolis 500. The opportunity we have to work with Vision and Tony George, who has been a good friend of mine for years, is extremely exciting for us - and now maybe Fuzzy can help us with our short game."
Six-year IndyCar Series veteran Ed Carpenter will make a return behind the wheel of the No.20 that he has driven since Vision Racing's inception in 2005. The 29-year-old Indianapolis resident finished the 2009 season by earning his career best finish of second, matched his career best start of fourth, led 35 laps and drove to six top-ten finishes.
"I'm very grateful and thankful to Fuzzy Zoeller and Fuzzy's Ultra Premium Vodka for coming on board to make this year's Indianapolis 500 a reality for me," says Carpenter who finished fifth and eighth in the last two editions of the Indianapolis 500. "It has been a very long and difficult off-season sitting on the sidelines after such a productive 2009 season and being back to the Indy 500 really means the world to me. I'm looking forward to performing competitively and representing these Indiana traditions to the best of my ability. Fuzzy has a great product and we hope to do a good job for them and make everyone proud."
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