Royal Purple Synthetic Oil, the official oil of the Mazda Road to Indy presented by Cooper Tires, took its partnership with the driver development ladder system one step further. Royal Purple titled all six rounds of competition at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 12 and 13, 2017. All races were in support of the Lupus Foundation of America.
Royal Purple Synthetic Oil continues to expand its role within the Mazda Road to Indy. Last year, the company debuted the Royal Purple Synthetic Oil “Slickest Pass” Award where a season-ending honor and $5,000 cash prize is given to competitors in each of the following series:
- Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda
- Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires
- Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires
“We are extremely proud of our partnership with the Mazda Road to Indy and look forward to helping young talent outperform the competition as they journey through major milestones in their careers, while also being able to help raise funds in the fight against lupus,” said David Hamilton, director of Sponsorships at Royal Purple Synthetic Oil. “The color purple represents lupus awareness, and this is a perfect partnership for the Royal Purple brand.”
May was Lupus Awareness Month, and Royal Purple Synthetic Oil and the Mazda Road to Indy joined forces to help bring attention to this mysterious, chronic autoimmune disease that sees 16,000 new cases reported each year. All 50-plus cars across the three series carried a decal in support of the Lupus Foundation of America, and a special hashtag — #RaceToEndLupus — was utilized. Fans also showed their support by donating on behalf of their favorite drivers via a special page on the national Lupus Foundation website.
Belardi Auto Racing, spearheaded by team owner Brian Belardi and team manager John Brunner, has been a staunch supporter of the Lupus Foundation of America.
“When close friends of our team, Emilee Hunt and Addie, were diagnosed with lupus, we decided to put the Lupus Foundation of America decals on our Indy Lights cars to help raise awareness in May,” Brunner said. “That was 2014, and when we heard many other competitors commenting about how lupus affected someone in their lives as well, we at Belardi Racing contacted our partners at the Mazda Road to Indy to propose a much bigger campaign that highlights this disease during the Indy sponsorship of the [MRTI Indy GP] with the Lupus Foundation of America.”