INDIANAPOLIS – Nineteen-year-old Cole Bodine will embark on the biggest opportunity of his young career when he straps in to compete for Clauson-Marshall Racing at the upcoming Driven2SaveLives BC39 presented by NOS Energy Drink at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Bodine, a micro sprint racer who has spent much of his time working in the Clauson-Marshall race shop this year after approaching team co-owner Tim Clauson for advice about advancing his career, will now have the chance to make a statement during the first-ever dirt-track race at this historic facility.
The Rossville, Ind., native will pilot the No. 57bc for Clauson-Marshall Racing during the two-day event on Sept. 5-6, carrying the red and blue colors of The Car Company of Warsaw and Goshen, a local Indiana dealership.
“This is a dream come true; it’s the chance of a lifetime,” said Bodine of racing for Clauson-Marshall. “I came to IMS a lot when I was younger, with my dad and my grandpa, and only dreamed of racing there. To say that I’m actually going to be racing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is really cool in itself, let alone that it’s the very first dirt race that they’re having there. I’m so thankful and I can’t wait to hopefully take advantage of this opportunity.”
“Cole Bodine came up through the grassroots and has earned everything he’s accomplished. He’s a big success story and just a really great guy,” added Mark D. vanBurk, co-owner of The Car Company. “He’s driven four times in our micro and he’s won all four times. We’re just really happy to support him.”
Clauson added that a story like Bodine’s goes right back to what the roots of Clauson-Marshall Racing are planted in: driver development and giving back to the sport.
“Getting to work with Cole on this opportunity is the exact reason I do this,” noted Clauson. “To work with kids who want to be in the racing industry, who aren’t afraid to work, this is the way we want to try and reward them.
“Sadly, it takes money, to do this, we all know that,” Clauson added. Like a lot of young talented racers, the financial side isn’t always there to just write a check whenever, but all Cole has done in the time he has been here has learned, met new people, networked, and gained the respect of everyone associated with our team from sponsors, ownership, drivers and fellow crew.”
Bodine didn’t actually know he would be competing at Indianapolis until shortly before the official unveiling of the car he’ll drive on Wednesday and Thursday.
“I learned about it on the Friday of Smackdown weekend (at Kokomo),” said Bodine. “That’s when I found out about it. They had gotten everyone together at the track and surprised me there with it, showed me a picture of the car and all that good stuff. It wasn’t that long ago that I figured it all out.”
This week’s run at Indianapolis marks a continued progression with CMR for Bodine, who after proving himself in the shop was called in to sub for team regular Zeb Wise when Wise broke his collarbone in June and had to sit out for eight weeks.