An Evening with Willy T. Ribbs on Monument Circle at the Columbia Club
Columbia Club in partnership with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway hosts an evening with Willy T. Ribbs, recognizing his first appearance at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway 30 years ago. A VIP evening reception will be held at the Columbia Club on Friday, May 28, featuring, Willy T. Ribbs (American race car driver, racing owner), Indianapolis Motor Speedway icons and other racing legends. Tickets are $150 per person, and include heavy hors d’oeuvres prepared by Columbia Club’s Chef Kendra Schmitt, an open bar and valet parking. Tickets can be purchased at columbiaclubevents.com with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the All Clear Foundation.
All Clear Foundation is an Official Charity of the NTTINDYCAR® SERIES and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Through a variety of programs, their enduring fundraising and awareness initiatives support First Responders year-round.
Attendees will have the opportunity to view Netflix’s Uppity Movie Trailer, and never before seen footage of The Willy T. Ribbs Story. The 2020 Netflix, Uppity Trailer is a documentary profiling a defiant driver who challenged racial barriers in American auto racing, becoming the first black man to race in the Indy 500.
Ribbs‘ love of cars and racing began at the age of four. At age nine, Ribbs worked as a ranch hand on his grandfather‘s ranch. Soon after his high school graduation in 1975, his first foray into motorsports was driving Formula Ford cars in Europe. He won the Dunlop Championship in his first year of competition, then returned to the United States and raced Formula Atlantic cars. Ribbs won the pole in the Long Beach Formula Atlantic race in 1982, outpacing veteran drivers before his engine failed. In 1983, he won five races in the SCCA Trans-Am and was honored as Pro Rookie of the Year. After competing in two NASCAR Winston Cup races in 1986, financial difficulties including the lack of corporate sponsorship kept his team from finishing the season.
In 1989, Bill and Camille Cosby stepped in and funded the Raynor-Cosby Motorsports team with Ribbs as the star driver. Ribbs won two top-ten events in his 1990 Championship Auto Racing Team (CART) Indianapolis debut. In 1991, he became the first African American to qualify for the Indianapolis 500, and he qualified again in 1993.
Friday – May 28, 2021
Purchase Tickets at columbiaclubevents.com
6:30pm – 9:00pm – Columbia Club, 121 Monument Circle, Indianapolis IN
9:45pm – Shining A Light, A Salute To Willy T. Ribbs on Monument Circle