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IPS is delighted to celebrate the 100th running
of the Indianapolis
500
. In honor of the milestone, 33 IndyCar drivers visited nine IPS schools
and two Speedway schools as part of Community Day. Each school was greeted by
three drivers.

 

Fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade students at Raymond F. Brandes School 65
were excited when Helio
Castroneves
, Takuma Soto
and Charlie
Kimball
walked into the gym. Principal Lauren Johnson pointed out how
fitting it is for her school to honor the Greatest Spectacle in Racing.

 

“Our theme is ‘Racing to the Winner’s Circle of Learning,’ so it’s really exciting for us to actually
have the drivers here because it shows them that when you do your best and
strive for excellence you can really achieve great things,” said Johnson.IndyCar drivers during Community Day

 The event kicked off with each driver introducing himself,
followed by breathtaking video highlights of drivers at work! Once the video
was finished, two members of the school’s news team, Stephanie G. and Mang T.
asked the questions that everyone wanted to know.

 

How much water do you drink on race day?” Mang asked Helio
Castroneves.

 

“Around two liters,” estimated Castroneves. “Sometimes I
drink a lot, sometimes I don’t drink as much. It depends on the weather. This
weekend it’s going to be really hot, so I’ll drink a lot of water.”

 

“Besides the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, what’s your
favorite place in Indianapolis?” questioned Mang.

 

After giving it some thought, Castroneves replied, “the
Brazilian Steakhouse” (to the amusement of his audience). “And the Indianapolis
Zoo,” he added.

 

Next, Stephanie asked Charlie Kimball, “How many calories do
you burn during a race?”

 

“During the race, we’ll burn approximately 1,500 to 2,000
calories depending on your heart rate,” said Kimball. “After the race, I try to
hydrate with a lot of water and eat really good nutrition Sunday night – a lot
of lean meat, chicken, fruits and vegetables and carbohydrates.”

 

When asked about his workout plan, Kimball said, “I work out
whenever I can. We travel a lot – we’re on the road a lot to different races.
On days I’m in a racecar, I don’t work out so I’m not sore when I’m driving.
Every day that I’m home in Indianapolis in the office or working with the race
team, I go train every morning. A lot of times I’ll do a second workout in the
afternoon.”

 

Continuing with the topic of wellness, the news team asked
Takuma Soto about his favorite foods.

 

“I eat a lot of fish and rice; that is typical Japanese
food.”

 

The program shifted from talking about food to tasting it.
Two students from each grade were selected to participate in a taste test in
which they wore a blindfold and tried to guess each food by taste.

 

The tomatoes and bell peppers weren’t met with much
enthusiasm from the testers; they were more tolerable of the apple.

 

Next, students watched a video about driver fitness that
explained how drivers are athletes who need endurance to race. Six students
were challenged to a plank competition to see who could hold their plank the
longest. They were all winners and impressed the drivers with their physical
fitness. The contest only ended to ensure time for the rest of the program!

 

“I’ve never met a racecar driver before. It was great,” said
Da’Shawn M. “I liked learning how they stay safe.”

 

The assembly ended with a special toast. Like the winner of
the Indy 500, each student drank a glass of milk, provided by Prairie Farms.

 

“This was a great way to wrap up the end of the year and
culminate all their hard work,” said Principal Johnson.

 

IPS is proud to support the Indy 500 in other ways as well.

 

Since the 1970s, staffers at Clarence Farrington School 61
have been allowing race fans to use their school parking lot. For the 500, fans
pay to bring their cars, campers and RVs to hang out for the entire weekend.
During the Brickyard 400, they offer parking accommodations on race day only.
This parking initiative is a lucrative fundraiser for the school. Over the
years, it’s funded student incentives, books, computers and supplies.

 

We look forward to seeing who takes the checkered flag on
May 29! No matter what, they’re all winners to us.
 
IndyCar Graphic