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Discussion Starter #1
Media Teleconference
Ford Fiesta at X Games 15

WHAT: Ford Fiesta drivers Kenny Brack, Tanner Foust, Brian Deegan and Jamie Allison of Ford Racing will be available on a conference call to discuss their preparation for the X Games and the Ford Fiesta rally car.

WHEN: Wednesday, July 29, 2009 from Noon – 12:30 p.m. Eastern

TELECONFERENCE ACCESS INFORMATION
US DIAL IN 877-888-4310 INTERNATIONAL DIAL IN 785-424-1899
CONFERENCE ID: 61049


INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES:
Kenny Brack, 1999 Indianapolis 500 Champion and 1998 IndyCar Champion
Tanner Foust, Two-time X Games rally competition medalist (2007 – gold, 2008 – silver)
Brian Deegan, 10-time X Games medalist competing in his first X Games rally competition
Jamie Allison, Ford Racing

BACKGROUND:
In anticipation of the 2010 Ford Fiesta production vehicle, Ford Racing and Olsbergs Motor Sports have developed a high-performance motorsport version of the compact car, which made its U.S. racing debut a Pikes Peak Hill Climb two weeks ago. Next up for Olsbergs MSE and the Fiesta is ESPN’s X Games 15 in Los Angeles.

The Fiesta X Games entries will be driven by an all-star trio in Kenny Brack, 1999 Indianapolis 500 champion, Tanner Foust, two-time X Games rally medalist including gold in 2007 and Brian Deegan, a ten-time X Games medalist who will be competing in his first X Games rally event.

Ford has a long and distinguished history in the FIA WRC (World Rally Championship), the toughest competition in motorsport for production-based cars. Ford has competed in the WRC since 1999 with the Focus RS World Rally Car and won back-to-back manufacturers' world titles in 2006 and 2007. The Ford Fiesta will be Ford Motor Company’s main competition vehicle for rallying in the coming years.

In Europe, the Fiesta name has long been synonymous with outstanding driving quality, design and value. The all-new Ford Fiesta is taking that three-decade heritage to U.S. consumers for the first time. Although the Fiesta production vehicle isn’t slated to go on sale in the United States until 2010, 100 of the stylish European cars are already in North America in the hands of 100 chosen Fiesta Movement Agents, a diverse group of individuals reflective of the Internet’s social media community. Follow the Fiesta Movement at: Fiesta Movement | The 2011 Ford Fiesta: Live Feed | FiestaMovement.com.

CONTACT:
Brent Maurer, Ford Racing, 313-434-6924 cell or [email protected]
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Here is the transcript of the conference:


07/29/2009


The new Ford Fiesta may not be hitting the streets of America until next year, but high-performance motorsports examples of the Fiesta made their U.S. racing debut 10 days ago as the Olsbergs Motor Sport Evolution team from Sweden brought two new Fiesta Rallycross cars to compete in the annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, taking second in the unlimited class. Now the Fiesta Rallycross cars have been converted to Rally America specs and will compete in the ESPN X Games 15 this week in Los Angeles. Driving the ROCKSTAR 2009 five-door Ford Fiesta, is two-time X Games medalist and 2007 X Games Rally Champion Tanner Foust. Joining Foust in the Olsbergs 2009 three-door Ford Fiesta on BFGoodrich Tires, is 1999 Indianapolis 500 Champion Kenny Brack. Rounding out the all-star trio is 10-time X Games medalist Brian Deegan, who was named to the top 100 Action Sports Stars by ESPN. Deegan, a motocross superstar, will be trading his two wheels for four as he drives the ROCKSTAR 2008 three-door hatchback Ford Fiesta on BFGoodrich Tires.

Joining the media teleconference today are the drivers Brian Deegan, Kenny Brack and Tanner Foust along with Jamie Allison, Manager, Ford Performance Group.


The new Ford Fiesta may not be hitting the streets of America until next year, but high-performance motorsports examples of the Fiesta made their U.S. racing debut 10 days ago as the Olsbergs Motor Sport Evolution team from Sweden brought two new Fiesta Rallycross cars to compete in the annual Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, taking second in the unlimited class. Now the Fiesta Rallycross cars have been converted to Rally America specs and will compete in the ESPN X Games 15 this week in Los Angeles. Driving the ROCKSTAR 2009 five-door Ford Fiesta, is two-time X Games medalist and 2007 X Games Rally Champion Tanner Foust. Joining Foust in the Olsbergs 2009 three-door Ford Fiesta on BFGoodrich Tires, is 1999 Indianapolis 500 Champion Kenny Brack. Rounding out the all-star trio is 10-time X Games medalist Brian Deegan, who was named to the top 100 Action Sports Stars by ESPN. Deegan, a motocross superstar, will be trading his two wheels for four as he drives the ROCKSTAR 2008 three-door hatchback Ford Fiesta on BFGoodrich Tires.

Joining the media teleconference today are the drivers Brian Deegan, Kenny Brack and Tanner Foust along with Jamie Allison, Manager, Ford Performance Group.
 

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Part Two:


JAIME ALLISON- Manager, Ford Performance Group – THE FIESTA IS CURRENTLY FORD OF EUROPE’S TOP SELLING CAR AND IS BEING INTRODUCED TO THE US MARKET IN A NUMBER OF UNIQUE WAYS. “We all know social media is the new frontier for marketing and PR, and we at Ford have decided to leverage that in an exciting way to introduce Fiesta to the American consumer, and to reach a very targeted audience that we wanted to go after. The first effort that went out a few months ago was the Fiesta Movement, where 100 agents were identified from across the blogosphere out of about 5,000 entries. These 100 agents have received European based Fiestas and have been blogging, tweeting, flickr-ing, youtube-ing, everything, you name it, from across the blogosphere and have been getting the word out about the Fiesta. What happens on the blogosphere, and through social media also happens in reality physically at a race event. We felt the Pikes Peak, as well as the X Games, are two physical opportunities to showcase the exciting attributes of the Fiesta. It’s fun to drive, has European DNA, its the future of Ford vehicle’s DNA and all from Ford. We are very excited to be affiliated with Olsbergs and ROCKSTAR, and with three famous personalities and skilled drivers, we’re going to showcase the capabilities of the Fiesta. We look forward to an exciting X Games event.”

TANNER FOUST – Formula Pro Drift Champion and X Games medalist – YOU WERE THE RUNNER-UP AT X GAMES A YEAR AGO AND IN ‘07 YOU WON THE RALLY EVENT. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS AFTER DRIVING THE FIESTA AND HOW ARE THINGS SHAPING UP FOR YOU? “Well I think the Fiesta is an amazingly capable little car. It’s kind of a unique opportunity. Actually, I spent some time growing up in Scotland, and one of the first sports cars I ever got in was a Cosworth Ford Escort. When I came back over to the States, I always wondered why Ford never had any of these crazy performance cars over here that they had over in the rest of the world. I’m really excited to be able to showcase some of the world capabilities it has going in against some of the top cars. I’ve been driving it the last couple of days and first of all, it’s an angry little car. Its one of the most eager little cars I have ever driven. It has an anti-lag system, so any time you go to throttle, any time you touch the throttle, you have 100% of the power instantaneously. It can’t help but throw you back in your seat. I’m just calming the car down, it’s capabilities are huge. It climbed Pikes Peak, and we have to somehow get this wild car to get through X Games.”

KENNY BRACK- Former Indy 500 Champion – YOU HAVE BEEN RETIRED SINCE 2005. HOW DID YOU GET INVOLVED WITH THIS EVENT? “I got an invitation to do the X Games from the Olsbergs Ford team, so I jumped at it. It’s quite different from what I’m used to doing. Its kind of like I’m a rookie again. Like Tanner was saying, the Fiesta is a great car and its great to be involved with it. We’re just trying to get our heads around the car basically.”

YOU HAD YOUR FIRST LOOK AT THE RALLY COURSE LAST NIGHT. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON THAT? “Well, it’s an amazing event. The course is very tight and unforgiving, as most of these types of events are. It’s very challenging too. I was just amazed to see the work that goes on, especially down in the stadium, where it looks like a sculpture. There are different jumps being made out of dirt. That’s all going to be transformed over night, Saturday and Sunday, to a Rally course. There’s very little running on the track, compared to certain races, which I guess that’s kind of the Rally style. In racing you have to fine-tune everything, and here it’s more like experience and you go with the flow more. It’s a matter of getting my head around that, but I look forward to this. Its going to be a great event, great drivers, and I think we have a great car too. I’m looking forward to it.”

BRIAN DEEGAN – 10-time X Games medalist –YOU’RE AN X GAMES REGULAR IN THE MOTOCROSS EVENT. THIS IS YOUR FIRST TIME PARTICIPATING IN THE RALLY EVENT. HOW HAS IT BEEN PREPARING FOR THE EVENT? “Yeah, I’ve been here for 10 events straight, at 10 X Games. I think having that in my head, I do always want to win a medal in everything I compete in, but Rally cars is a big challenge. This year I’m a rookie in that class, so I don’t feel like I have a lot of pressure, but I kind of put that on myself to do good. I want to go out there and compete with the best guys, and that’s why I’m here. I think I’m in the best car, and from the looks of it, we have a really good chance.

YOU EXPANDED YOUR CAREER THIS YEAR IN OFF-ROAD TRUCK RACING. HAS THIS RALLY RACING HELPED YOU WITH THAT SERIES? “Yeah, absolutely. When I signed up for Rallying at X Games, they said I had to go do some Rally races, so I went back East and raced. I came back to the Lucas Oil Series, which is short course truck racing where I race a Ford Ranger, and I came back and just smoked everyone. It just helped my racing style. At this point, rallying has just been great for me all around. It’s just been exciting, to just be in a roll cage is a big advantage”

BRACK- HOW HAS THIS CHANGE OF RACING BEEN FOR YOU? WHAT IF ANY, SKILLS IN THE CAR HAVE TRANSFERRED OVER? “I run a young driver development program now in Europe, and Olsbergs is one of the sponsors in the program. I got this invitation to compete in the X Games and Olsbergs asked me to go and do it, so I said yeah, why not, I guess I can come out of retirement and do that. That was the start of it all. It is very different from what I’ve done before. The biggest difference is you don’t practice as much. You don’t fine-tune everything as much as you do in other racing. It is a totally different environment when it comes to how things are done, organization, and etcetera. I think you rely on your past experiences, and car control. Obviously the speeds are slower, but you’re going to have to fit that car in between these walls everywhere, and the Fiesta is a little machine. It’s going to be challenging to do that competitively, but nothing is impossible. I look forward to it. It’s not a comeback into driving for me. Its fun to take part in the X Games, it’s a big event for this type of motorsport, and its just a great feeling to just be out there.”

IS THIS SOMETHING YOU WOULD RECOMMEND TO OTHER OPEN WHEEL DRIVERS? “Definitely, and I think these types of cars are very accessible. I couldn’t drive an Indy car anymore because I’m not fit enough. You have to spend two hours a day in the gym to just be able to drive those cars. These cars, they’re fast, they’re explosive, but the lack of G’s and the length of the runs are short, so you can get in these cars and you can actually use the car’s potential. I haven’t been racing for four or five years, but I can still get in there and physically have no limitations, which is a great thing. You can have a lot of fun with it.”

FOUST- HOW DOES KENNY LOOK? HOW IS HE PICKING THIS UP? “Kenny looks awesome in the car, as you would expect. We had a few days of testing. The thing is, what you don’t get to do in Rally racing very often is watch your teammates and competitors. You rarely get a chance in Rally racing to watch them unless you’re watching from the lines or on TV afterwards. Kenny is very precise, so I have gone to school a little bit on him tightening up and resisting some of my natural urges to drift and slide the car. I also rode with Brian, who I think is going to surprise a lot of people. I think having the three of us together is really going to benefit all of us as a team.”
 

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Part Three:

BRACK- YOU MADE A TREMENDOUS COMEBACK AFTER YOUR RACE IN TEXAS TO MAKE A COMEBACK IN INDY IN 2005. DID COMING BACK LIKE THAT CONVICE YOU THAT YOU DIDN’T HAVE THE WANT TO KEEP RUNNING INDY CAR? “Well, put it this way, I came back and obviously it was a great relief to myself to see that I was back to where I was before the accident. You need to see that you are back to normal, especially after a big accident like that. I set the fastest qualifying time, and I felt that I could do this as competitively as before. However, I was in a different position. I started a family, and I just had my daughter. To compete at that level consistently, it requires such an effort. I didn’t feel like I had room for anything else in my life. I just came to the conclusion, on the possibilities of continuing, I came to the conclusion that I won Indy, I won the championship. I had a successful racing career, now I have a family. Lets focus on that, instead of going around in circles. In retrospect, I think everything has its time in a lifetime. When you’re 20 or 30, yeah racing is fun, when you’re 40 it can still be fun, but when you get up to 40 or 50, your focus has changed. If that happens, and you feel like you want to have time for other things, there’s no way you’re going to be able to beat the other guys. If you don’t feel like you have the energy to beat the other guys, then what’s the point of competing? That was the reason that I said I need to stop. These things we’re doing here requires a lot of effort too, but its for a few short days, and its not year around. It’s not testing, and developing, and thinking about it 365 days a year. It’s a short time so it feels very well.”

ARE YOU INVOLVED IN THE SOCIAL NETWORKING THAT JAIME TALKED ABOUT WITH TWITTER? “Me? Tanner and I were talking about this the other day, and I still have an old cell phone. I only use it to talk on the phone with, and Tanner, you should see him. He’s like a computer switchboard or something. I really try to keep it simple. I have a Facebook account, but that’s about it, and I don’t even use it that much. I don’t really have time for that stuff, or maybe I’m just not in that age group where that’s important. I don’t know.”

YOU NO LONGER LIVE IN THE STATES, HOW OFTEN DO YOU GET TO THE STATES ANYMORE? “I go there quite a lot. I still have a house in Indy. I live in London, England now, but the States will always have a special place in my heart. I lived here most of my grown-up life actually. I was here for almost 10 years. I feel very much at home here. I know a lot of people, and I love the American way and the American mentality. I still feel close to the States, and I probably always will.”

ALLISON- WHAT’S NEXT FOR THE FIESTA AFTER THE X GAMES? “Well, the Fiesta in WRC has just been announced. It doesn’t get much bigger than that for the Fiesta, but Stateside, three of the cars that are competing today will be available at SEMA and future auto shows for other people to come and see them. Also, we’ve been approached by other teams who want to field the Fiesta for Rally America, so I would love to talk to some of these private teams who want to go on and compete in Rally America starting next year. Lastly, when Fiesta does hit the streets, we are developing a line of performance packs for anybody who owns a Fiesta to get a feeling of Rally. So, Rally-styled performance parts from Ford Fiesta, for street Fiestas about a year from now.”
 
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