INDYCAR PRESS RELEASE
SONOMA, Calif. — Verizon IndyCar Series veteran Oriol Servia will drive the No. 25 Andretti Autosport Honda in the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma this weekend in tribute to Justin Wilson, who succumbed to a head injury Aug. 24 sustained in a race Aug. 23.
“Justin was a true racer and advocate to our sport,” said team owner Michael Andretti. “We will have Justin and his family in our hearts this weekend as we honor him in the way he would want us to, by doing what he loved – racing.”
Servia, a close friend of Wilson’s, said it will be a difficult role but he’s honored, too.
“It’s hard for the words to come out the right way,” he said. “I have known and raced Justin for more than 10 years. I have an enormous amount of respect for him as a racer, but his qualities as a human were definitely an inspiration to anyone who ever met him.
“As I said earlier this week, I truly feel he was one of these souls who has evolved a lot more than the rest of us, and it is something you could feel immediately during your first exchange with him. He will be greatly missed as we all try to emulate his spirit. I am honored and emotional with the opportunity of driving his car this weekend. I want to thank my friends at Andretti Autosport for the opportunity, and I want to express how deeply touched I am by the desire of Julia, Stefan and all the Wilson family to have me driving the No. 25.”
The Verizon IndyCar Series champion will be crowned following the 85-lap race on the 2.385-mile, 12-turn road course is Aug. 30 (1 p.m. PT on NBCSN).
“As a family, we cannot imagine a better person to race in Justin’s honor than Oriol (Servia),” said Stefan Wilson, brother to Justin and fellow Indy car driver. “His path and Justin’s crossed in many different ways through the years. As a competitor, and also as a person, he carries Justin’s spirit well, and we know that Justin would approve.”
Additionally, American Honda Motor Company and Honda Performance Development announced a contribution to the Wilson Children’s Fund based on laps completed by all Honda entries.
The Wilson Children’s Fund was established this week to benefit the Wilson’s young daughters.
American Honda and HPD will contribute $50 per lap completed at Sonoma by each of the 13 Honda entries for a possible donation of more than $55,000 to the Wilson Children’s Fund.
“Justin was a valuable member of our racing program, but he also was our friend, and all of us at American Honda and HPD grieve together at his loss,” said Art St. Cyr, president of Honda Performance Development. “We’re hoping to honor his memory with this pledge, and hope that Justin’s many fans and friends can also assist the family at this tragic time.”
A decal created to honor the memory of Wilson will be on the race cars this weekend. The logo also is on T-shirts that will be on sale at Sonoma Raceway and available online, with 100 percent of the net revenues donated to the Wilson Children’s Fund.
An account has been established on behalf of the Wilson family. An online option will be established soon. Those wishing to contribute can send checks to:
Wilson Children’s Fund
c/o Forum Credit Union
PO Box 50738
Indianapolis, IN 46250-0738
Phone: (317) 558-6000
UK-based supporters can send cards and other condolences to the family to:
Keith Wilson c/o Lisa Davis
The Old Post Office
West Sussex RH13 9EZ