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IndyCar Series seeks to bolster Hollywood ties with Santa Monica office

January 11, 2011 |  1:42 pm

The Izod IndyCar Series and Indianapolis Motor Speedway said Tuesday they're opening an office in Santa Monica to further develop marketing opportunities with Hollywood.

JackThe series' marquee event is the Indianapolis 500 at the famed speedway on Memorial Day weekend in May, and the series schedule also includes the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach each April.

IndyCar said the new office's goal is to heighten the presence of the series and the Indy 500 -- which will hold its 100th anniversary race this year on May 29 -- in "film, television, music and emerging media."

"If we want to grow the sport, we need to be fully vested in relationships with the entertainment community that can tell the story lines of our sport," series chief executive Randy Bernard said in a statement.

IndyCar said the new office would be managed by Sarah Nettinga, who held a similar post with NASCAR stock-car racing and earlier worked in the television industry.

-- Jim Peltz

Photo: Actor Jack Nicholson waves the green flag to start the Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway last May 30. Credit: Darron Cummings / Associated Press