Chicago Bears Head Coach Lovie Smith Named Grand Marshal for USG SHEETROCK 400

(Joliet, Ill. - June 27, 2007) Chicago Bears head coach Lovie Smith has been named Grand Marshal for the USG SHEETROCK® 400, NASCAR Nextel Cup Series race, at Chicagoland Speedway on Sun., July 15, which begins at 3 p.m. local time.

Smith, who led the Bears to the Super Bowl last season in just his third season as head coach, will declare the most famous words in racing, "Gentlemen, start your engines!" He'll then ride in the Grand Marshal car in front of the Pace Car, which leads the field of NASCAR drivers onto the track for the race.

"It's a great honor to be the Grand Marshal for this year's NASCAR event at Chicagoland Speedway," said Smith. "I think our football team and NASCAR drivers have a common trait: we all like to play fast. I look forward to watching some of the best drivers in the world compete for the checkered flag. It will be an exciting afternoon."

The 2005 Associated Press NFL Coach of the Year will also be available for interviews in the Infield Media Center on Sunday before the race.

"We are very excited to have Bears head coach Lovie Smith join us on race day as Grand Marshal of the USG SHEETROCK® 400," said Matthew Alexander, president of Chicagoland Speedway. "In only three short seasons, he's accomplished many great things both on and off the field and has established a fan base that truly appreciates what he has done for the team and the city of Chicago. Lovie is a fan-favorite throughout the Chicagoland area, so we know our fans will be thrilled to see him participate in the largest sporting event in the state of Illinois."

Smith enters his fourth season as head coach of the Chicago Bears with the distinction of winning more games over his first three seasons than any coach in franchise history. Guiding the team to its first Super Bowl appearance in 21 years and second consecutive NFC North division title in 2006, Smith also is the first coach in team history to lead the team to the playoffs in two of his first three seasons. The 2005 NFL Coach of the Year has a career regular season record of 29-19 (.604) with Chicago which is tied for the seventh-best in the NFL since 2004. The Bears, one of just five teams to compete in the postseason each of the last two years, have a 2-2 postseason record under Smith to give him the third-most playoff victories in team history behind the six of team founder George Halas and Mike Ditka.

Smith was named the Associated Press NFL Coach of the Year for 2005 after becoming the fastest head coach in Bears history to lead the team to a division title, doing so in his second campaign while setting a franchise record for victories by a sophomore head coach with an 11-5 record. The Coach of the Year Award was the sixth all-time for a Bears head coach, more than any other team in the NFL. Smith - who won with 24.5 of 50 possible votes - was the fourth head coach in team history to win the award after team founder George S. Halas in 1963 and 1965, Mike Ditka in 1985 and 1988 and Dick Jauron in 2001. Just the third coach in team history to lead the organization to the playoffs in his second season, Smith guided the Bears to their first-ever NFC North Division title in 2005. En route to the team's second division championship in five seasons, the Bears completed their first season sweep of Green Bay since 1991.

Lovie and his wife, MaryAnne, have three sons, Mikal, Matthew, and Miles. Lovie is very active in the community and gives much of his time to helping the American Diabetes Association - a foundation near to his heart since his mother suffers from Type-2 diabetes. He participates in ADA sponsored events such as the Tour de Cure Bike Ride, the ADA Care to Cure Gala and their Father's Day Dinner. Smith also purchases 10 tickets for every home game as part of the Bears ticket exchange program and donates them to children suffering from diabetes. In addition, he and his wife have start

ed the Lovie Smith and MaryAnne Smith Foundation which is a scholarship program designed to aid qualified high school students to attend college.

Chicagoland Speedway and Route 66 Raceway are wholly-owned by International Speedway Corporation ("ISC"), a leading promoter of motorsports activities. ISC owns and/or operates 13 of the nation's major motorsports entertainment facilities, including Daytona International Speedway (home of the Daytona 500), as well as owns or has interest in a number of other motorsports-related businesses.


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