Tony Renna Wins 1996 Team USA Scholarship

Written by Team USA. Posted in Team USA News

Published on September 06, 1996 with No Comments

Sep 6, 1996
Monterey, Calif. – Tony Renna, 19, f rom Deland, Fla., has been selected from a short list of seven candidates as winner of the prestigious Valvoline Team USA Scholarship. As his prize, Renna will contest the EFDA Formula Opel European Union Series Nations Cup VII event at Donington Park, England, on November 2/3.
Renna was awarded the Scholarship following an interview session with a panel of judges during the Miller 200 IndyCar weekend at Mid-Ohio. The roster included IndyCar drivers Jimmy Vasser and Bryan Herta, the first two recipients of the Valvoline Team USA Scholarship; IndyCar President Andrew Craig; team owners Barry Green (Brahma Sports Team) and Bruce McCaw (PacWest Racing Group); and sponsors’ representative Jeff Hampel (LCI International).

“It’s a great honor to represent the U.S.,” said Renna when the announcement was made today at Laguna Seca Raceway. “It’s definitely a big deal and I feel privileged to have been selected by such an accomplished group of people. I’m really proud to follow in the footsteps of drivers like Jimmy Vasser and Bryan Herta.”

Renna was joined for the interview process by two of his rivals from the Barber Dodge Pro Series – Derek Hill and Bryan Selby – and four from the United States Formula Ford 2000 National Championship – Alex Barron, Derek Hill, Steve Knapp, Allen May and Matt Sielsky.

“We were impressed by all of them,” said Vasser. “It was tough to make our decision. The overall standard was very high, especially considering the pressure-cooker situation these guys found themselves in. I think that serves to show the depth that there is in American racing right now.”

Awareness in the Valvoline Team USA Scholarship has reached an all-time high this year, with new contributors such as IndyCar President Andrew Craig, Rick Klein (Klein Tools), Motorola, PacWest Racing Group and Car & Driver magazine joining stalwart supporters Steve Horne (Tasman Motorsports Group) and RACER magazine. Bridgestone/Firestone, LCI International and Miller Brewing also have returned with increased levels of support which will allow Renna the opportunity to conduct an extensive test program – and perhaps another race or two – prior to the Nations Cup which will be one of the major supporting events to the revived Tourist Trophy race for Super Touring Cars.

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