Driver Marcus Armstrong poses with the new No. 11 IU Simon Cancer Center race car.
No. 11 IU car driven by Marcus Armstrong at Gallagher Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course
INDIANAPOLIS–Earlier today, Chip Ganassi Racing revealed its new livery: the No. 11 IU Simon Cancer Center race car that will be driven by Marcus Armstrong at this weekend’s Gallagher Grand Prix.
Unveiled at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the car’s livery sports an eye-catching IU design that celebrates the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center’s commitment to accelerating life-saving research. Emblazoned with “Research Cures Cancer” and “Accelerating Cancer Research,” the sleek open-wheel race car will highlight Indiana’s only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center during this hometown race to a national audience.
The livery was donated by the Jack, John and Jeff Schwarz family.
“First and foremost, I want to thank the Schwarz family for their generosity in making the cancer center livery possible,” said Kelvin Lee, MD, director of the cancer center. “Also, a special thanks goes to the entire Chip Ganassi Racing organization for welcoming us with open arms. I know this is a busy and exciting time for Chip Ganassi, and I know it takes a lot of work to bring on a new partner for one race. I appreciate the extra efforts they have taken to make this happen. I can’t wait to see it in action during Saturday’s race.”
Blair Julian, team manager and No. 11 strategist, said, “It is always exciting to welcome a new partner to the team, but this one is a special honor knowing how big of an impact the IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center has on our Indianapolis community. We appreciate all the hard work and research done by the center and are delighted to promote their efforts in this race. What a privilege this is to carry their colors and their name just down the road at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. We’ll do everything we can to maximize our performance and try to get the No. 11 car to victory lane.”
This unique opportunity ties into the cancer center’s Race to Beat Cancer public education campaign that focuses on breast, colon, lung and testicular cancers as well as head and neck cancer and cervical cancer, the two most common types of HPV-related cancers. Experts from the cancer center provide easy-to-understand tips about prevention and early detection, signs and symptoms, screening guidelines, the latest research, and more.
“Education is one pillar of our mission at the cancer center, and with this online education campaign, we want Hoosiers and others to be informed about things they can do to help prevent cancer from developing as well as be knowledgeable about cancer screenings,” Lee said.
Armstrong entered his rookie season in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES at age 22, piloting the No. 11 Honda in road and street course races. He remains the frontrunner for the Rookie of the Year award with 173 points entering the Indy GP (31-point advantage). In July, Armstrong registered a career-high finish of seventh place at the Honda Indy Toronto race.
Armstrong made his North American professional debut after competing in the FIA Formula 2 Championship from 2020 to 2022 where he earned four wins and eight podiums. Armstrong scored his first victory in the series in 2021 at Jeddah Corniche Circuit in Saudi Arabia, and then registered three wins across the 2022 campaign in Italy, Austria and the Netherlands. Armstrong also served as a development driver for the Scuderia Ferrari F1 team in 2021.
The Christchurch, New Zealand native launched his racing career behind the wheel of go-karts at 10 years old. He won five go-karting national championships in New Zealand before moving to Europe in 2015 to compete on the world stage. In 2017, Armstrong made the jump to Formula 4 where he won the Italian Formula 4 championship in his first season competing in the series. Armstrong competed in Formula 3 across the 2018 and 2019 seasons, where he tallied four wins, four pole positions and 16 podiums.
This is not the first time the cancer center has been connected to a race car. In 2022, the center sponsored formula car driver Jackson Lee, a motorsports engineering student at IUPUI. During that sponsorship, Jackson Lee Racing helped celebrate the center’s 30th anniversary and raise awareness of its history of lifesaving research. Earlier this year, Jackson Lee Racing and the cancer center launched the Race to Beat Cancer online education campaign.
About the IU Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center
The Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center is the state’s only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center and one of only 54 in the nation. The prestigious comprehensive designation recognizes the center’s excellence in basic, clinical, and population research, outstanding educational activities, and effective community outreach program across the state. It is also one of only 33 members of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network. As a member, the center’s physicians have a role in determining the recognized standard of clinical care for cancer patients. The center is the central hub for cancer research and education across Indiana University.