The IndyCar Series known as the NTT IndyCar Series under sponsorship, is the premier level of open-wheel racing in North America. Its parent company began in 1996 as the Indy Racing League, created by Indianapolis Motor Speedway owner Tony George as a competitor to CART. In 2008, the IndyCar Series merged with the Champ Car World Series; the series is self-sanctioned by IndyCar. The series' premier event is the Indianapolis 500. For 1996–1997, the series was referred to as the Indy Racing League. For 1998–1999, the series garnered its first title sponsor, was advertised as the Pep Boys Indy Racing League. In 2000, the series sold its naming rights to Internet search engine Northern Light, the series was named the Indy Racing Northern Light Series; the IndyCar Series name was adopted beginning in 2003, as the series was now entitled to use it due to the expiration of a 1996 legal settlement with CART. The series began to progressively downplay the former IRL name, changing its name to IndyCar for the 2008 season.
Izod was announced as the series title sponsor beginning on November 5, 2009. Izod ended its sponsorship after the 2013 season. In 2014, Verizon Communications became title sponsor of the series through 2018. In January 2019, it was announced that Japanese communications company NTT would become title sponsor and official technology partner of the IndyCar Series; the IndyCar Series is not an open formula motor sport archetype. A spec-series, the league mandates chassis and engine manufacturers which teams must use each season. Dallara provides a specification chassis to all teams, with Honda and Chevrolet providing teams engines. In the series' first season, 1992 to 1995 model year CART chassis built by Lola and Reynard were used; the first new Indycar came into being in 1997. Tony George specified new technical rules for production-based engines; the move outlawed the CART chassis and turbocharged engines, the mainstay of the Indianapolis 500 since the late 1970s. Starting with the 2003 season, the series rules were changed to require chassis manufacturers to be approved by the league before they could build cars.
Prior to that, any interested party could build a car, provided it met the rules and was made available to customers at the league-mandated price. In total, four manufacturers have built IndyCar chassis. Dallara began producing Indycars for the 1997 season; the Dallara and G Force chassis were evenly matched over their first few seasons, but the Dallara began to win more races. This caused more teams further increasing their success; as of 2017, a Dallara chassis has been used by 17 Indy 500 winners, although there have not been any competing manufacturers since 2008. Dallara was tabbed to build the Firestone Indy Lights machines. After the withdrawal of factory support from Panoz Auto Development, they are the only supplier of new chassis; the G Force chassis was introduced in 1997, won the 1997 and 2000 Indy 500 races. In 2002, Élan Motorsport Technologies bought G Force, the chassis was renamed "Panoz G Force", shortened to "Panoz" in 2005. In 2003 a new model was introduced, it won the Indy 500 in 2003–2004, finished second in 2005.
It fell out of favor starting in 2006, by only one finished in the top ten at Indy. Little factory support was given to IndyCar teams by Panoz after that point, as they had concentrated on their DP01 chassis for the rival Champ Car World Series. By 2008, only one Panoz saw track time, an aborted second weekend effort at Indy, that resulted in Phil Giebler being injured in a practice crash. Riley & Scott produced IndyCar chassis from 1997 to 2000, their initial effort, the Mark V, was introduced late in the 1997 season limiting its potential market. It proved to be uncompetitive. After Riley & Scott was purchased by Reynard, an all-new model, the Mark VII, was introduced for the 2000 season, it won in Phoenix, the second race of the season, but was off the pace at Indy and was dropped by its teams. Falcon Cars was founded by Michael Kranefuss and Ken Anderson in 2002 as the third approved chassis supplier for the 2003 season. One rolling chassis was completed and shown, but it was never fitted with a working engine and never ran.
No orders were filled. Superficially, IndyCar machines resemble those of other open-wheeled formula racing cars, with front and rear wings and prominent airboxes; the cars were unique, being designed for oval racing. Cars were designed to accommodate the added requirements of road racing; because of a preexisting schedule conflict, the Champ Car World Series spec Panoz DP01, with a Cosworth engine, was run in an IndyCar Series points event in the 2008 Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. In 2012 the series adopted the Dallara IR-12 chassis as a cost control method, IndyCar negotiated a price of $349,000 per chassis; the new specification improved safety, the most obvious feature being the partial enclosure around the rear wheels, which acts to prevent cars ramping up over another vehicle's back end. This chassis was intended to support multiple aerodynamic kits, but introduction of these was delayed until 2015 with teams citing costs. In 2015, teams began running aero kits developed by their engine manufacturers.
The kits, while increasing speeds and offering clear distinction between the two manufacturers, did lead to significant cost increases. Further, Chevrolet's aero kit was the more dominant with Honda only able to mount a competitive charge on ovals
United Federal Credit Union is a federally chartered credit union based in St. Joseph, Michigan with a 70-year history. Chartered in 1949, UFCU has more than 174,000 Members in all 50 states and the District of Columbia; the credit union assets in excess of $2.8 billion as of 2019. UFCU has 35 branches in six states: Michigan, Indiana, North Carolina, Arkansas. United Federal Credit Union offers a diverse array of products and services for businesses and individuals, include checking and savings accounts. United Federal Credit Union’s origins date to the 1930s and 1940s, when the Nineteen Hundred Employee Credit Union, the Buchanan Clark Employee Credit Union, were formed to serve the employees of the companies that would become the Whirlpool Corporation and the Clark Equipment Company. NHECU formed in 1949 with eight volunteers who handled the transactions. Nineteen Hundred Corporation became Whirlpool Corporation in 1950, the credit union became Whirlpool Employee Federal Credit Union. By 1955, WEFCU’s assets reached $1 million.
By 1958, assets doubled to $2 million. Assets more than doubled again over the next five years, in 1963, WEFCU moved into a brand new building in St. Joseph, MI. In 1969, BCECU became Clark Credit Union, a short time Clark Federal Credit Union. Explosive growth continued for WEFCU between 1963 and 1978, requiring the credit union to relocate to 2900 South State Street in downtown St. Joseph. Assets exceeded $30 million, with 27 employees. Beginning in 1980, WEFCU merged with credit unions serving Whirlpool subsidiaries in Marion, OH and Fort Smith, AR. In 1987, CFCU reached $50 million in assets and changed their name to United Federal Credit Union while WEFCU because Whirlpool Community Federal Credit Union. In 1992, WCFCU changed again to the First Resource Federal Credit Union. During the 1990s, both FRFCU and UFCU broke ground on new corporate headquarters buildings, located in St. Joseph, MI, Buchanan, MI, respectively. New branches opened in Holland, MI in 2000, in 2006, FRFCU merged with UFCU.
All locations adopted the UFCU name, but the headquarters remained in St. Joseph and retained the FRFCU charter number. In 2009, growth continued with the acquisition of Clearstar Financial Credit Union in Reno, NV. In 2011, UFCU purchased Griffith Savings Bank in Griffith, IN, marking the first time a bank had been purchased by a federally chartered credit union; as of 2012, assets reached $1.5 billion with plans in progress for an expanded corporate headquarters. In October 2015 Lake Michigan Credit Union and United Federal Credit Union announced their intent to merge; the merger did not occur. Assets grew to over $2 billion and membership to over 150,000 in 2016 with the opening of branches in Carson City, NV, Asheville, NC. In 2018, United entered the South Bend, Indiana market with 2 new branch locations. United Federal Credit Union provides services to individuals and businesses. For Individual Members, there are checking accounts, long or short-term savings options including IRAs or HSAs.
UFCU offers a Member Assistance Program to help Members work through debt concerns. UFCU offers Business Members access to loans, checking accounts, cash management options, as well as payroll management and merchant services. • UFCU talks about financial news and takes questions from listeners during Monday Morning Money Talk with Pat Moody on WSJM radio. • UFCU Double-R Branch in Nevada collaborated with state troopers and the Nevada Humane Society to sponsor a Shred-a-Thon for area residents to get rid of unneeded documents. UFCU employees helped carry boxes and bags, the credit union donated $1,000 to the state troopers’ cause, the Special Olympics. • In 2011, UFCU donated over $150,000 to charities and community projects in five states. More than two dozen organizations benefited, including Habitat for Humanity, March of Dimes, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Relay for Life, several school districts. • In 2011, UFCU employees gave more than 660 hours of volunteer time, aided by a UFCU program that provides paid time off to participate in volunteer efforts.
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