guests on Tuesday May 16th, 2017

   Mike Lanigan

“Mike” is an entrepreneur and  IndyCar Series team owner.
Lanigan founded a division of his father’s company, Mi-Jack  Construction Equipment in Indianapolis in 1973. In 1989 he returned to his hometown of Chicago to become president of the company. The company produces rubber-tire gantry cranes. In 1992 Mi-Jack began sponsoring cars competing in CART  and the Indianapolis 500. 
Lanigan expanded his sponsorship into team ownership in 2001, joining forces with Eric Bachelart to co-own Conquest Racing which competed in the IndyCar Series in 2001 and 2002, then the Champ Car World Series from 2003 to 2006. Lanigan sold his interest in Conquest following the 2007 season to join the ownership group at Newman/Haas Racing, which became Neweman/Haas/Lanigan Racing, a much more successful Champ Car team. N/H/L joined the IndyCar Series following the unification between Champ Car and IndyCar prior to the 2008 season. He was also a partial owner of Carl A. Haas Motorsports in NASCAR in 2007. During the 2010 season, he left the ownership group of Newman/Haas. In December 2010, he joined the ownership team of Rahal Letterman Racing which was renamed Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing. The team has IndyCar operations and races full-time in the Weather Tech Sportscar Championship.
Lanigan also took over the promoter position of Champ Car’s Grand Prix of Houston in 2006 and Grand Prix of Cleveland in 2007, neither of which survived the merger to appear on the IndyCar Series schedule. Houston returned to the schedule for the 2103 season but the revived race only lasted two years, removed again for the 2015 season.

   Jay Howard

Jay is a British professional race car driver who competed in the  Verizon IndyCar Series and Indinapolis 500 and resides in Indianapolis, Indiana. Jay was the 2005 US Formula Ford Zetec champion and moved up to the Firestone Indy Lights, where he captured two wins on his way to the 2006 championship for Sam Schmidt Motorsports in his rookie season. He qualified for his first Indianapolis 500 in 2011.

What has Jay been up to the last few years? Check this out…

The Formula 4 United States Championship Powered by Honda is a youth-focused, cost-contained series serving as a building block to open-wheel racing for competitors transitioning from karts to cars. Veteran IndyCar driver and Motorsports Driver Development lead principal Jay Howard is encompassing the series mantra with full-force, entering the overall youngest team in F4 U.S.

Howard confirmed his three-car lineup with two of the three entered coming straight from his karting program. Sam Paley, 14, of Cincinnati, Ohio, Max Peichel, 15, of Edina, Minnesota, and Parker Locke, 15, of San Antonio, Texas, round out the grid for the Indianapolis-based team.
“MDD is comprised of young, experienced kids,” said Howard. “I started working with Sam when he was nine years old, Max was on the MDD karting team for a year before F4 and Parker is a completely new addition this season. I’m optimistic with the group of kids I have that we can win some races and have a Rookie of the Year.”
The MDD mission is to mentor young drivers to prepare them for the top levels of the motorsport ladder. The core of Howard’s program is taking the expertise he has gained along with his success he experienced throughout his career and translate it back into coaching each driver’s particular s­kill set.

This May, Howard will compete in the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500 in the Honda No. 77 car sponsored by the Tony Stewart Foundation, and he is bringing his F4 U.S. team along for the ride.
“The F4 season has a break in May, so we are using that as a learning opportunity for the MDD competitors,” Howard said. “They are coming to the Indy 500 and I’m going to give each of them a headset. I want them to hear how I interact with engineers. Hopefully they can learn something from that, maybe even give me some pointers. It will also give them a fresh take on IMS since they will be competing there in June.”

   John Brunner

“John, the team’s general manager, and [team owner] Brian Belardi invited me to the IndyCar/Indy Lights race at Watkins Glen last fall before the Pro Mazda season ended,” he said. “I had a head-start in knowing the guys and seeing how the team works and knowing their cars are fast. They won that weekend and then again at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. I just really enjoyed how the Belardi guys worked. They
Based in Brownsburg, Ind., the Belardi team has been a part of the Indy Lights series since 2011. The team won the 2014 driver’s championship with Gabby Chaves. In 2016, Belardi won more races than any other team with six Indy Lights victories. 

   Kyler Kaiser

Kyle has been involved in racing since he was 7 years old, and is extremely motivated by his aspirations of a career in professional motorsports as well as his ambitious academic goals.  During the past eleven years, Kyle has competed in various levels of karting and open-wheel racing. Kyle’s open-wheel experience includes his recent rookie season in the 2013 Pro Mazda Championship presented by Cooper Tires, the 2012 Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear, and two full seasons in the 2010 & 2011 Skip Barber Western Regional Championships. His karting experience includes; Jr. Sportsman, Jr. Super Sportsman, Tag Jr, HPV-2, Rookie Sportsman, HPV-1, Jr.-1 Two Cycle, and Kid Karts.
In addition to Kyle’s many race wins and podium finishes in both karting and open-wheel racing, Kyle won the Pro Formula Mazda Championship in the 2012 Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear, finished 3rd in the 2011 Skip Barber Western Regional Championship, and 2nd in the 2010 Skip Barber Western Regional Championship along with Rookie of the Year honors.  Kyle was also selected as of one six Skip Barber Scholarships recipients in the 2010-11 Skip Barber Karting Shootout.  Kyle’s most significant karting accomplishment was his commanding HPV-1 victory at the 2008 IKF 2-Cycle Sprint Grand Nationals in Santa Maria, CA. where Kyle was awarded a Duffy and a Screaming Eagle.
Kyle made his professional open-wheel racing debut September 7th, 2012 by joining the “Mazda Road to Indy” Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, in Monterey, CA.  He continued his campaign for a second year in the 2014 Pro Mazda Championship presented by Cooper Tires with Juncos Racing based in Brownsburg, IN. Kyle went on to finish 6th in the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires and compiled 4 podium finishes and a first “proffesional” victory in the season finale.
Kyle celebrated his May 2014 graduation from Bellarmine College Preparatory High School in San Jose, CA by moving to Indianapolis, IN to be close to the Juncos Racing Team headquarters to focus his energy on the current championship and his pursuit of a career in professional motorsports.  Kyle is currently studying at the University of Santa Clara, CA.
Kyle finished 6th in the 2015 Indy Lights Championship and 3rd on his second attempt in 2016. In 2017 Kyle is returning to race for a third season in the Indy Lights Championship.

See you Tuesday at McGilvery’s Speedway…