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Daily Trackside Report - Friday, May 20



DAY 7 – FRIDAY, MAY 20, 2011

TODAY’S SCHEDULE (all times local):

7 a.m.

Garages open

Noon-6 p.m.

Indianapolis 500 practice

6:15 p.m.

Pole Day Qualifications Draw, Coca-Cola Stage


Medical update from Dr. Michael Olinger, INDYCAR medical director: Simona de Silvestro was evaluated this morning for the second-degree burns to her right hand and superficial burns to her left hand and has not been cleared to drive. Further updates on her condition and driving status will be provided when available.


Ray Harroun, winner of the first Indianapolis 500 in 1911, began racing his Marmon “Wasp” through the nation’s mail stream Friday, May 20 in the form of 50 million First-Class Mail Forever stamps to celebrate 100 years of racing at the iconic Indianapolis 500.

The first-day-of-issue dedication ceremony took place at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway during the Fast Friday practice for the 100th Indianapolis 500.

Joining Donahoe in dedicating the stamp were Greg Ballard, Indianapolis mayor; Jeff Belskus, Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation president and chief executive officer and Pancho Carter, 1985 Indianapolis 500 pole winner.

The Indianapolis 500 Forever Stamp is always equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce rate.

PATRICK DONAHOE (U.S. Postmaster General): “At the Postal Service, we understand the power of our stamps in celebrating American history and culture – in this case, the 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500. I won’t be so bold as to predict the winner of the race, but I will predict that 50 or 100 years from now the U.S. Postal Service will issue another stamp to commemorate the next milestone anniversary of this great event.”

JEFF BELSKUS (President and chief executive officer, Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation): “We’ve eagerly been awaiting this day since the United States Postal Service announced the commemorative stamp honoring the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500 last December. It’s a great honor and an important part of our Centennial celebration that the iconic image of the Marmon ‘Wasp’ will be seen on mail sent from coast to coast.”


James Goodloe, Roger Griffiths, Marcelo Martinelli and Robert Bell of Honda Performance Development (HPD) received the 45th annual BorgWarner Louis Schwitzer Award on May 20 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for their development of the Honda Refueling Safety Interlock System.

The Honda Refueling Safety Interlock System prevents a racing car from leaving its pit with the refueling hose attached.

Presented to engineers by engineers, the Louis Schwitzer Award rewards individuals with the courage and conviction to explore and develop new concepts in racing technology. BorgWarner sponsors this prestigious $10,000 award, which is presented by the Indiana Section of SAE International. The winners’ names are added to the Schwitzer trophy on permanent display at the IMS Hall of Fame Museum.

The award was initiated in 1967 to recognize automotive pioneer Louis Schwitzer.

The heart of the Honda Refueling Safety Interlock System is an off-the-shelf LED photoelectric sensor, reworked by HPD to improve its reliability, heat-resistance, and general suitability for motorsports. It is installed in the Dallara IndyCar chassis adjacent to the fuel receiver “buckeye” and is connected to the chassis wiring loom. 


            U.S. Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe was the

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