Written by Nicole Ellan James
Barrett-Jackson, The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions, joined forces with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing to sponsor the No. 23 DRR Palermo’s/Barrett-Jackson Chevrolet IndyCar driven by Santino Ferrucci in the 106th running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) on May 29.
“Having the Barrett-Jackson brand on one of the 33 cars competing in The Greatest Spectacle in Racing is something I am incredibly proud of. Bringing all this full-circle is truly a milestone for me and for all of us at Barrett-Jackson,” said Craig Jackson, chairman and CEO of Barrett-Jackson. “I have many fond memories of attending the Indy 500 with Tom Barrett.”
Tom Barrett earned a reputation as the “World’s Greatest Name in the Collector Car Industry” and was the co-founder of Barrett-Jackson. He was a regular fixture at the Indy 500 each year from 1949 through the mid-1990s. Tom’s enjoyment of all things automotive led to a passion for fast cars and eventually resulted in his ownership of a team in 1981 and becoming a sponsor of other drivers throughout the years.
“Tom always had a suite at the Indy 500, and I remember walking along pit row with him and other industry icons like Linda Vaughn. He knew everybody, including Roger Penske and many guys from the Indy side of the automotive world,” Craig said.
Barrett-Jackson has an established history of auctioning race cars and hosting team owners and champion drivers at its auctions, including Roger Penske, owner of the IndyCar Series, Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Penske Racing Team; and Chip Ganassi, owner of Chip Ganassi Racing. Former Indy 500 drivers who have previously attended Barrett-Jackson auctions include Paul Tracy, Dan Gurney, Parnelli Jones, Tom Sneva, and Arie Luyendyk, a close Jackson family friend.
Ferrucci, who will be driving the No 23 IndyCar, made an impression on the Barrett-Jackson team well ahead of this race. Their first introduction occurred in 2017 at the Barrett-Jackson Northeast Auction. Ferrucci joined Barrett-Jackson president Steve Davis and Craig on the block to witness automotive action that is completely different from what he experiences on the racetrack.
The 2022 race will be Ferrucci’s fourth Indianapolis start. The 23-year-old driving star, a resident of Dallas, TX, qualified in 15th position and will start the race from the fifth row on the grid. Ferrucci placed fourth at IMS in 2020 and sixth last year in the 500-mile classic after scoring “Rookie of the Year” honors in 2019 with a seventh-place finish.
Heading up Ferrucci’s talents is the team of Dreyer & Reinbold Racing. Their legacy dates to 1927 at IMS with Floyd “Pop” Dreyer, who served as a crewman and mechanic on the Duesenberg team. Dreyer built cars for the entire Indy 500 front row in 1931.
Dennis Reinbold, Floyd Dreyer’s grandson and DRR team owner, made his initial Indy 500 entry in 1999 and Reinbold’s organization has qualified each of the 45 cars he has entered as a car owner in the Indy 500. Reinbold has recorded five top-10 finishes.
“It is a privilege to be a part of this year’s Indy 500 with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing and showcase Barrett-Jackson and the #DrivenHearts campaign to the hundreds of thousands of fans in attendance and the millions watching around the world,” Craig said.
Barrett-Jackson’s Vice President of Brand Strategy and Chief Philanthropy Officer, Carolyn Jackson, added, “The #DrivenHearts campaign is a passion project for me. It raises funds and brings awareness to the American Heart Association. This great organization helps save lives every day and we are proud to include them on the No. 23 car.”
Barrett-Jackson’s legacy is steeped in charitable history. One such chapter of it related to the Indy 500 includes The Stinger’s $1 million sale, a one-of-a-kind IndyCar that saw 100-percent of its hammer price benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the children fighting cancer and other life-threatening diseases. The special car was auctioned by Barrett-Jackson in 2016 prior to the 100th running of the Indy 500.
“We are looking forward to watching Ferrucci showcase his skills at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during the 106th running of the Indy 500,” Craig said. “Participating in this sport, at this level marks a special place in history not only for Barrett-Jackson, but for me personally. I am sure Tom Barrett, and my late father Russ Jackson would be incredibly moved by this endeavor.”