GRAND-AM Drivers Share Racing Secrets with Read for Speed Students
Donohue, Gidley, Marsal and Pruett Ride Along with Second and Fourth Graders
WATKINS GLEN, NY – Second and fourth graders from Watkins Glen Elementary School took to the turns of Watkins Glen International along with some new friends to celebrate the conclusion of the Read for Speed program on Thursday, June 2. Over 125 students from the second and fourth grades visited the historic road course as a conclusion of the year-long program. The trip was headlined by the students receiving racing pointers from GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series stars Scott Pruett, David Donohue, Memo Gidley, and GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge driver Mike Marsal as they all took two laps around the track in school buses.
“It is always nice to have an experience like that with kids, to talk about racing because they bring up questions you do not normally hear from adults and members of the media,” Gidley said. “They brought up some really great questions and it was a lot of fun to be a part of it. If I was in school, this would be a fieldtrip that I would want to be at. Just being at the racetrack raises their energy level.”
Gidley, co-driver of the No. 42 Team Sahlen Mazda RX-8, spent time after he and the other three drivers spoke with the students while taking laps around the track in the school buses. Each racer shared their experiences of competing in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen or Continental Tire 150, explained what happens in the car during races, and answered the students’ questions. The official Chevy Camaro Pace Car led the way while WGI mascot Max Traxx waved the green flag.
The Watkins Glen Elementary students returned to the FrontStretch grandstand along with Max Traxx and Gidley. While cars from the GRAND-AM Continental Tire Challenge series took practice laps, students ate lunch before being treated to ice cream provided by Friendly’s in the Arnot Mall.
Pruett won is the three-time defending Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen champion and currently Rolex Series points leader. Donohue is a 2008 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona and 2003 Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen champion. Marshal co-drives the No. 97 Turner Motorsports BMW M3 with Joey Hand.
Tickets for the 2011 race season at Watkins Glen International are on sale now! Fans can order their tickets or get more information by calling the WGI ticket office at 866-461-RACE (7223) or visiting the official website www.TheGlen.com. Gift certificates and track merchandise can all be purchased at The Shop located at 2 North Franklin Street in downtown Watkins Glen. The Shop is open Monday – Sunday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. Keep up with the latest happenings at The Glen by visiting the official Watkins Glen International Facebook page, www.Facebook.com/watkinsgleninternational, and following WGI on Twitter, @WGI.