Contact: Eric McCombs (925) 998-8277

Star Mazda Championship Rewards Competitors

November 18, 2005. Pacoima, California. Star Race Cars announced today that the prize package for drivers competing in the 2005 Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear exceeded six-hundred thousand dollars in cash and other prizes.

“It has been the goal of the Championship from its inception to give as much as possible back to the competitors so it is with great pleasure that we announce the value of this seasons prize package,” Series President Gary Rodrigues commented. “We have to thank the sponsors of our series, from our primary sponsors Mazda and Goodyear, to all our associate sponsors, BBS, Bosch, VP Fuels, Motec, Hawk Brakes, and Quartermaster, for their support in making this a reality.”

In winning the championship, Raphael Matos, of Belo Horizonte, Brazil, was this season biggest winner. In addition to securing the $100,000 and new RX-8 that go the champion, he also received a test in a Daytona Prototype with the Spirit of Daytona team as well as a test in the BK Motorsports Mazda Courage LMP2 prototype. The reward may continue into next season as a successful test in the Mazda LMP2 car could lead to Matos driving the car in the 2006 12-Hours of Sebring. Matos has also been invited to test with several other teams in various series based on his results from this season.

Second place finisher and 2005 Rookie-of-the-Year Robbie Pecorari, of Aston, Pennsylvania, earned just over $80,000 for the season while third place finisher James Hinchcliffe, from Oakville, Ontario, Canada, earned $50,000 at the series banquet.

Prize money was paid through the top fifteen finishing positions, but the series also found ways to reward all competitors with drawings held every race weekend for all drivers entered in the championship for two sets of Goodyear race tires and a car set of Hawk brake pads.

“Racing is not an inexpensive proposition so we will continue to look for ways to reward all competitors in our series,” Rodrigues said. “A perfect example of this would be the Racing for Kids program we put together which allowed participating drivers the opportunity to give back to the community, working with sick children in the communities where we race.”

About the Star Mazda Series

The Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear has become the most competitive open-wheel development series in North America. Featuring the Pro Formula Mazda, which features a carbon-fiber chassis, six-speed sequential gearbox, and a 240-horsepower Mazda rotary powerplant, the series has helped propel the careers of drivers such as 2004 Champion Michael McDowell, now driving in ChampCar and race-winner in the GrandAm Series; 2002 Champion Guy Cosmo, who along with fellow Star Mazda graduate Jamie Bach was named 2005 Rookie-of-the-Year in the American LeMans Series, and 2002 race winner Scott Speed, who will line up on the Formula One grid next season.