V8 Supercars team owner Lucas Dumbrell will be cheering on Sam Schmidt Motorsports driver Alex Tagliani when the Canadian starts today’s Indianapolis 500 from pole position.
IndyCar team owner Schmidt and 21-year-old Dumbrell, the youngest team owner in the history of V8 Supercars, were both left quadriplegics after racing accidents and kept up their involvement in motor racing through team ownership.
While Schmidt’s team has amassed four Indy Lights Series championships across its decade in operation, Dumbrell’s V8 Supercars squad is just 18 months old and is still finding its feat in the competitive championship.
“It’s people like Sam Schmidt who really inspire me to work hard and try to push my team to the top rung of the sport,” said Dumbrell.
“We’re a young team and we’ve got a long way to go but it just shows you it can be done.
“One of Sam’s cars is starting one of the biggest races in the world from pole position, that’s like having our Gulf Western Oil Commodore start from pole at Bathurst.
“That may be a dream for us right now, but I’m sure Sam thought the same about having pole at Indy when his team was in its infancy.
“It’s a really inspiring story and one that I hope to be able to draw some parallels with as my own team grows and evolves.
“After I had my accident I received a letter from Sir Frank Williams that really showed me that I could still play an active role in motor racing.
“Now seeing one of Sam Schmidt’s cars on pole at Indy makes me want to work even harder at achieving the goals we have set for Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport.”
Running just one car in the full Izod IndyCar Series schedule for Tagliani, Schmidt is also running Amercian Townsend Bell and Briton Jay Howard (in conjunction with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing) in this weekend’s race.
New Zealand’s Wade Cunningham is scheduled to join the team for Texas, Kentucky and Indianapolis later in the season.
See below for a video interview produced by Lucas Dumbrell Motorsport