SPEEDWAY, Ind. (WISH) — Each year racing fans, Indiana mayors and business leaders flock to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for a Hoosier tradition — the 500 Festival Breakfast at the Brickyard.
Each year the event has a featured guest. This year former IndyCar driver Sam Schmidt is the guest of honor.
Schmidt sustained a spinal cord injury in 2000 while practicing at the Walt Disney World Speedway.
Since his injury he has created the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation (SSPF) which raises money for medical research and rehabilitation for those who suffer from spinal cord injuries.
SSPF is now called Conquer Paralysis Now and the foundation is leading the pack when it comes to research and treatment for spinal cord injuries.
WISH-TV Indianapolis 500 correspondent Laura Steele spoke with Schmidt during the honorary breakfast.
Laura learned Schmidt got his start in IndyCar racing after a stint on a popular game show where he won thousands of dollars — money that led to his start in the sport.
Click on the videos for more. For more information on this year’s event, click here.