Springfield, Ohio - How do you show allegiance to your alma mater? If you sponsor a racecar you display your school's logo and colors prominently on the quarter panel, just as Eugene Miller, a 1965 Wittenberg graduate and Rochester, N.Y. businessman has done. It doesn't hurt that the car finished ahead of the pack as the winner from last year's Busch North, NASCAR Touring Series race at Watkins Glen International Speedway.
The Wittenberg car #44 is prominently displayed along side a pace car this week at the 2002 Rochester International Auto Show through March 3. Also appearing to sign autographs is car #44 owner and 1998 NASCAR Busch Series Rookie-of-the-year Andy Santerre.
Car #44 sporting the Wittenberg University logo won the Busch North road course race "Little Trees 150" in Aug. 2001 at renowned Watkins Glen International Speedway with veteran driver Tom Carey, Jr. behind the wheel and Andy Santerre acting as crew chief. Carey started at the pole but only led one lap, proving to be the most important one, the final lap, to collect the largest purse in the 14-year history of the NASCAR Busch North Series. With live television coverage on NBC, the sponsorship gained national attention for the university.
"The auto show appearance gives Wittenberg a great opportunity to recruit in the backyard of fellow perennial Division III football powerhouse Ithaca College," said Eugene Miller, car #44 sponsor. "We are distributing Wittenberg materials at the show and it is going beyond our expectations."
"We're thrilled with the chance to tell young people in the northeast about our tradition of academic and athletic excellence," said Gus Geil, Wittenberg's vice president for university relations. "The growing popularity of NASCAR and the Busch North Series has offered us a unique way to recruit, thanks largely to car sponsor and proud Tiger grad Eugene Miller."
The Wittenberg car will also appear the following week at the Carquest Motorsports Expo in Syracuse, N.Y., at the Syracuse Fairgrounds.
Wittenberg University, affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, promotes a style of education that emphasizes high academic achievement, personal attention, and a faculty that is dedicated to teaching excellence. With more than 40 academic majors, over one-hundred campus organizations and 22 intercollegiate sports, students enjoy a dynamic learning environment dedicated to intellectual, spiritual, aesthetic, social and physical development.
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