ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — official event release — Chris Jones/IndyCar photo —
Organizers of the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg have named Gerald McCoy, four-time Pro Bowl defensive tackle of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, as grand marshal of the 2016 event, which runs March 11-13.
As Grand Marshal, McCoy will be involved in the pre-race ceremonies and will make the famous, “Drivers, start your engines!” call to start the season-opening Verizon IndyCar Series race on March 13. Members of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Cheerleaders 2015-2016 squad will also join in the opening festivities for the Verizon IndyCar Series race to serve as Grid Girls.
“We are pleased to have Gerald take on the very important role of Grand Marshal for the big race,” said Kim Green, co-owner, chairman and CEO of Green Savoree Racing Promotions, the organizers of the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. “Having the opportunity to say the most famous words in racing is an exciting part of the overall spectacle and festivities that highlight the event weekend. We’re looking forward to welcoming Gerald and the Buccaneers organization to the track for another great event.”
Selected third overall by Tampa Bay in the 2010 NFL Draft, McCoy has been voted to four consecutive Pro Bowls (2012-15) while also being named a two-time Associated Press All-Pro, two-time Sporting News All-Pro, and two-time Pro Football Writers of America All-NFL Team selection.
An active member of the Tampa Bay community, McCoy supports a number of charitable causes, including the Pediatric Cancer Foundation and Metropolitan Ministries. He is a spokesperson for the Bucs Vision Mobile powered by the Glazer Family Foundation, promoting the importance of improved eyesight for children. And every season, McCoy sponsors the “Gerald’s Little Giants” Front Row Fans section to provide special Buccaneers game day experiences for local charities at Raymond James Stadium.
“It’s an honor to be named Grand Marshal and represent the Buccaneers and the entire Tampa Bay region at the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg,” said McCoy. “This is a marquee event that unites our community with the racing world, and I’m blessed to have the chance to take part. I can’t wait to kick off the race and look forward to seeing everyone in downtown St. Pete for the festivities.”
CREDIT: Green Savoree Racing Promotions