updated: 7/24/2013 12:57:58 PM
An Indiana University graduate, who anchors ESPN's "SportsCenter," will lead field to the green flag at this weekend's Brickyard 400. Sage Steele will drive the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Pace Car prior to the start of the 20th running of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.
July 24, 2013
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - ESPN "SportsCenter" anchor and Indiana University graduate Sage Steele will drive the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Pace Car to lead the field of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series superstars to the start of the Crown Royal Presents the Samuel Deeds 400 at the Brickyard Powered by BigMachineRecords.com on Sunday, July 28 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Chevrolet also paced the previous 19 Sprint Cup races at IMS, and this year's Brickyard 400 will mark the sixth time a Camaro has paced the race.
"I am honored and just floored that it's all coming full circle like this," said Steele, who also graduated from high school in the Indianapolis area. "I could not be more thrilled because of what Indianapolis means to me and that's where my love of racing began. I never in a million years thought I'd be asked to do something like this. It just means more to me than anything I've ever been asked to do."
Steele, who graduated in 1995 from Indiana University with a bachelor of science degree in sports communications, began her television career in 1995 at WSBT-TV in South Bend, Ind., as a producer and reporter. Her next stop was in Indianapolis at WISH-TV where she covered the Indianapolis 500 and Brickyard 400 races at IMS, served as the beat reporter for the Indianapolis Colts and covered the 1997 NCAA Men's Final Four. In August 1998, Steele moved to Tampa and worked as a reporter, anchor and host for WFTS-TV before taking a similar position with Fox Sports Net in Tampa as a reporter. In April 2001, Steele became the anchor for the debut of "Comcast SportsNet" in the Washington/Baltimore region, where she anchored the show "SportsNite" for six years.
Steele joined ESPN in 2007 and is a co-anchor of ESPN's "SportsCenter." Most recently, Steele served as update anchor during live daytime "SportsCenter" editions, which debuted in August 2008. She also previously contributed to "First Take" and "Mike & Mike in the Morning," and has served as a guest co-host of ESPN2's "SportsNation."
Away from the studio, Steele anchored the daytime "SportsCenter" segments from the NBA Finals in 2012 and has hosted the Scripps National Spelling Bee each year since 2010.
"We are honored that Chevrolet will once again pace at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and that Sage Steele will drive the Camaro ZL1 Coupe pace car," said Jim Campbell, U.S. vice president of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. "Sage will be driving a car that can go from 0-60 in 3.9 seconds as the Camaro ZL1 Coupe carries on the long Chevrolet tradition of high-performance sports cars."
The Camaro ZL1 Coupe brings supercar levels of performance and technology to the sports car segment. It is powered by a 6.2-liter supercharged Chevrolet small block V8 that delivers 580 horsepower and 556 lb.-ft. of torque, and has a top speed of 184 miles per hour.
The Camaro ZL1 also features a factory-installed engine oil cooler, high capacity transmission oil coller (automatic and manual) and differential cooler, Magnetic Ride ControlTM, world-class Brembo brakes and 4-wheel independent suspension.
"We welcome Sage Steele back home again to Indiana to drive the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 Pace Car for the 20th running of the annual NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at IMS," said J. Douglas Boles, Indianapolis Motor Speedway president. "A Chevrolet has paced this race every year, and we're thrilled to see a Bowtie at the front of the field for the 20th time."
IMS will be the epicenter of American stock car racing and North American sports car racing July 25-28, 2013, as the NASCAR Nationwide Series and GRAND-AM Road Racing will once again join the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for four exciting races during the second annual Kroger Super Weekend at the Brickyard.
Races will take place at IMS on the 2.5-mile oval and 2.534-mile Grand Prix road course during the same weekend, and GRAND-AM Road Racing and the NASCAR Nationwide Series will make their second appearances at IMS on Friday, July 26 and Saturday, July 27. The weekend will culminate Sunday, July 28, with the 20th running of the Crown Royal Presents the Samuel Deeds 400 at the Brickyard Powered by BigMachineRecords.com.
2013 Kroger Super Weekend tickets: Ticket orders for the 2013 Kroger Super Weekend at the Brickyard can be made at www.ims.com/tickets and through the IMS Ticket Office at (317) 492-6700, or (800) 822-INDY outside the Indianapolis area, or by visiting the ticket office at the IMS Administration Building at the corner of Georgetown Road and 16th Street between 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (ET) Monday-Friday.
General admission tickets will cost $10 for Thursday, July 25, $30 for Friday, July 26, $25 for Saturday, July 27 and $30 for Sunday, July 28. A four-day Kroger Super Weekend general admission ticket is $80, a great value for the ultimate race weekend. A three-day general admission ticket (Thursday-Saturday) is $65.
Children ages 12 and under will be admitted free any of the four days of the Super Weekend at the Brickyard when accompanied by an adult with a general admission ticket.
Reserved tickets for the Saturday and Sunday action also will be available at various price ranges.
Source: Indianapolis Motor Speedway