The Road to Indy
Two IndyCar Motorsports Teams Call Westfield Home
Writer: Christopher DeHarde
Photography Provided by Amy Payne & Photos @ Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
Miller Vinatieri Motorsports and Jay Howard Driver Development have a right to claim themselves as the fastest-growing businesses in Westfield. After all, how many other race teams are based in one of Indianapolis’s fastest-growing suburbs?
Dr. Jack Miller co-owns MVM with Indianapolis Colts kicker Adam Vinatieri and has been a Westfield resident since he first raced in the Indianapolis 500 in 1997. Location was critical for the man known as The Racing Dentist for his work outside racing, and Westfield was a perfect place for his race team because getting to work takes nothing more than 30 seconds to walk from his back door to the shop.
“When I raced Indy cars, I built a pretty big building to store mobile dental clinics and our coaches and equipment like that,” Miller says. “So, when we decided to start the karting team when Jack (son) was three, we didn’t have to go rent a place because we already had a building.
“I’ve lived there and I like to support Westfield, I have businesses in Westfield and properties and it was a perfect opportunity. I didn’t have to invest and build another building somewhere else.”
Jay Howard still races in the Indianapolis 500 and wanted to go his own direction for locating his team’s race shop. Many teams are based within a short drive of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and in other suburbs such as Brownsburg, but Howard found a great location in Westfield for his race shop.
“I had a bit of an idea of the general area where I wanted to be, and I’m literally 11 minutes to my home so that was good,” Howard says. “It’s coincidental that the building came up in the exact spot I wanted to be. If that building hadn’t come available maybe we would’ve moved somewhere else in Westfield, but the goal all along was to be in the city of Westfield.
“We’ve got a great location, all the building that’s going on around us is fantastic and if anyone can add a few more lunch spots we would appreciate that. We love the area, it’s safe, I just can’t say enough good about it.”
Both teams have embraced the Westfield community wholeheartedly and the community has done likewise.
“I think we get some hometown cheering,” Miller says. “Jack is an Eagle Scout in his scout troop, they follow him on all of his social media and we get a lot of support from the residents in the city. It’s still small enough where a lot of people know each other.”
“The community has super nice people, all the boys that work at the shop have gotten to know the locals,” Howard adds. “It’s been good, really receptive, good people, I really appreciate the Westfield Police Department, they keep coming by and keep an eye on everything so it’s been really good.”
Both teams are in the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship, the bottom step on the Road to Indy development ladder system for the NTT IndyCar Series. Both teams had two races during the March 8-10 weekend on the streets of St. Petersburg supporting the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. Miller’s team raced with two cars, one for Dr. Jack’s son Jack William Miller and the other for Eduardo Barrichello, son of former Formula One driver and Indianapolis 500 competitor Rubens Barrichello.
Rasmussen nearly brought home a win for Howard’s team in race two before an incident on the last lap dropped him from second to 15th place. Race leader Darren Keane spun in front of Rasmussen and clipped Rasmussen’s right rear tire, sending the Dane into a spin and damaging the rear wing and right rear suspension.