New IRL IndyCar team Playa Del Racing, which will operate out of Kelley Racing’s shop, has gained DHL Worldwide Express as its title sponsor. According to co-owner Gary Sallee, who was involved with Eddie Cheever in the late ’90s, Playa Del could run two cars including one for series veteran and ex-champion Scott Sharp, who has one year left with Delphi backing. Autosport Magazine 10/17/04
This Indy Star article
says, Assuming contracts are signed, [Tom] Kelley will sell his assets to a five-person group known as Playa Del Racing, which means "Beach Racing." Among the officials is Gary Sallee, formerly of ISM Racing, which co-founded Team Cheever. Jeff Ward and Steve Knapp won Rookie of the Year awards at the Indianapolis 500 with Sallee in 1997 and 1998. Playa Del has a sponsorship program in place, although Sallee wouldn't confirm it Saturday. The company is DHL Worldwide Express, a delivery company that competes with Federal Express and UPS. [Editor's Note:
This is the latest in a long string of original IRL teams to be driven out of business when the mighty CART teams took over the IRL.] 10/16/04
Rumor has it that this new team will purchase the assets of Kelley Racing. Playa Del Racing is headed by former IRL team owner Gary Sallee, previously with ISM Racing, with sponsorship coming from a well-known package freight company. Gary Sallee, President of ISM Holding
, has been practicing general business law in Indianapolis, Indiana since 1981. His law practice has focused on sports and entertainment management as well as commercial real estate development. In 1993, Mr. Sallee together with Mr. Hancher formed International Sports Management. Mr. Sallee is an NFLPA contract advisor and has represented players in the NFL; USFL, CFL, NHL and other team based sports. During the early 80's He was also a member of the Board of Advisors of the Indianapolis Checkers IHL Hockey Team. Mr. Sallee has represented many personalities from the entertainment world including record companies, a recording studio, promoters and sponsors. He has also been involved in the organizing of special events such as the closing ceremonies for the Pan American games and the National Sports Festival, hosted by the city of Indianapolis. Mr. Sallee has also been involved with various charitable organizations such as the Hemophilia Foundation of Indiana where he served on the Board of Directors for more than ten years and as President has for five years. He recently served as a member of the Board of Directors of the National Hemophilia Foundation. 10/16/04
Look for a new 2-car IRL team to be announced soon – Playa Del Racing. If you visit their website
you will find an IRL logo and this – Life at the beach is fun, relaxing and inviting. Experiences at the racetrack, and relationships with race teams should be the same. It is with that higher purpose that we set upon our task of bringing the spirit of the beach to the Indy Racing League. We want our fans to feel that they can kick back and relax with our team and to enjoy a casual relationship with our sponsors.
We believe our team, our sponsors, and our fans will enjoy the relationships we develop as we compete in the Indy Racing League and as we gather at select locations around the country to enjoy the fun and the sun, to relax and enjoy our new friends and support the sponsors who believe in our fans and the Playa Del Racing Team.
Of course we understand that winning races is our primary goal, and there is no more fun than winning races, especially the Indy 500. Our team is made up of seasoned professionals with decades of experience in Indy Car racing, many of whom proudly wear championship rings from Indy, and most of whom have won at other venues. Most importantly, we all remember when it was fun to go to the racetrack. With Playa Del Racing, it will be fun again.