SOURCE: Grand Prix Association of Long Beach

Grand Prix Association of Long Beach

March 11, 2015 09:00 ET

Grand Prix Association of Long Beach Announces Drivers for 2015 Pro/Celebrity Race

Actors, Olympians, Rock Stars, and a Terminator Get Behind the Wheel for Charity

LONG BEACH, CA--(Marketwired - Mar 11, 2015) - Grand Prix Association of Long Beach officials announced today that actors Alfonso Ribeiro, Robert Patrick and Mekhi Phifer, Olympian Dara Torres and musicians Mark McGrath and John Rzeznik are among the 18 participants from film, television, music, sports and fashion who will compete in the 2015 Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Pro/Celebrity Race.

The 39th annual charity race will take place April 18 on the 1.97-mile street course in downtown Long Beach, Calif., as part of the 41st Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach weekend.

The field of racers will take to the streets in 210-horsepower Scion FR-S race-prepped cars, navigating high speeds and demanding turns to benefit "Racing for Kids," a national fundraising program supporting children's hospitals throughout the United States. The announced field of intensely competitive personalities includes, in alphabetical order:

Donna Feldman (@DonnaFeldmaninc): One of Maxim's sexiest women, this model, TV Host and actress has starred in music videos for Justin Timberlake and Sugar Ray, plus co-hosted TV Guide's The Fashion Team.

Edy Ganem (@EdyGanem): Stars as 'Valentina Diaz' on Lifetime's hit show "Devious Maids," by Executive Producer Eva Longoria. She is also the star of the current feature film "Ana Maria in Novela Land." 

Willie Gault: Former NFL wide receiver and Olympic athlete. He played for the Chicago Bears and Los Angeles Raiders in his 11 seasons in the NFL, winning Super Bowl XX with the Chicago Bears.

Nathan Kress (@NathanKress): Known around the world for his lead role in Nickelodeon's hit show "iCarly," this Kids' Choice Award nominee also starred in the 2014 feature film "Into the Storm."

James Maslow (@JamesMaslow): Kids' Choice award-winning actor and musician best known as the star of top-rated Nickelodeon program "Big Time Rush." Currently co-starring as 'Kevin Mohr' on the Sony Crackle original series, "Sequestered" and plays lead in upcoming films "Seeds of Yesterday" and "Wild For The Night." He was also a finalist on Season 18 of "Dancing With The Stars."

Steve Mason (@VeniceMase): ESPN Radio host of the No. 1-rated "Mason & Ireland Show" for 18 years, and regular contributor to Fox 11's "Good Day LA." He has been the lead anchor for the USC Football Radio Network, and most recently began anchoring duties for the L.A. Dodgers Television Network.

Mark McGrath (@Mark_Mcgrath): Lead singer of Sugar Ray. He has graced the cover of Rolling Stone and hosted "EXTRA!," "Killer Karaoke" and "Don't Forget the Lyrics." He also appeared on NBC's "Celebrity Apprentice."

Raul Mendez: Considered by many in Mexico as one of the finest actors of his generation. Best known for his role as 'Victor 'Charcorta' Casillas' in "El Señor de los Cielos." He will also be featured in the soon to be released "Texas Rising" with Bill Paxton, Ray Liotta and Brendan Fraser.

Joshua Morrow (@JoshuaMorrowyr): Soap Opera Digest award-winning actor starring as 'Nicolas Newman' on the No. 1 daytime drama, "The Young and The Restless."

Robert Patrick (@RobertPatrickT2): Actor whose breakthrough role came as the legendary T-1000 in Terminator 2. He has been featured in iconic films such as "Die Hard 2," "Last Action Hero," "Flags of Our Fathers," "Walk the Line," and is currently starring as 'Agent Cabe Gallow' on CBS's "Scorpion."

Mekhi Phifer (@MekhiPhifer): Actor who portrayed 'Dr. Greg Pratt' on NBC's long-running medical drama "ER," and had a co-starring role opposite Eminem in the feature film "8 Mile." He also starred in the feature film "Divergent" and the upcoming sequel, "Insurgent."

John Rzeznik (@JohnRzeznikggd): Guitarist and frontman of the Goo Goo Dolls, who have sold more than 10 million albums, with 13 Number One and Top Ten hit singles including, "Black Balloon," "Iris" and "Slide." The Goo Good Dolls are currently touring in support of their 10th studio album, MAGNETIC.

Drivers who will compete in the "Pro-Division," starting 30 seconds behind the others, include NHRA Top Fuel Champion and four celebrities who have won the Pro/Celebrity Race in past years:

Antron Brown (@AntronBrown): A NHRA 2012 Top Fuel champion. Brown is the first African American to win the Top Fuel championship. He is currently driving the Matco Tools Toyota for Don Schumacher Racing in Top Fuel Division.

Brett Davern (@BDavv): The returning champion of the 2014 Pro/Celebrity Race. He stars as 'Jake Rosati' in MTV's hit series "Awkward." In 2013, he filmed the Beach Boys bio-pic "Love & Mercy" playing the young 'Carl Wilson.' He also played the lead in the feature film "Born to Race 2: Fast Track."

Alfonso Ribeiro (Alfonso_Ribeiro): A two-time Toyota Pro/Celebrity race winner (1994 & 1995). Best-known for his role as 'Carlton' on "Fresh Prince of Bel Air," last season Ribeiro took home the coveted Mirror Ball trophy on "Dancing with the Stars."

Dara Torres (@DaraTorres): 12-time Olympic medalist swimmer, who was named one of the "Top Female Athletes of the Decade" by Sports Illustrated. In 2002, Torres was the first female celebrity to win the Toyota Pro/Celebrity race, joined in Victory Lane by Pro category winner Danica Patrick.

Rutledge Wood (@RutledgeWood): Co-host of "Top Gear USA" and an auto racing analyst on Fox Sports 1. Wood won the Pro/Celebrity Race in 2013.

Rounding out the field is the Grand Prix Foundation of Long Beach charity auction winner Dave Pasant, a retired insurance executive. Pasant is also an executive producer of the recently released film "Road Hard," written by and starring Adam Carolla.

"This is an impressive and competitive group of stars, athletes, musicians and pro drivers that will put on a great show," Jim Michaelian, president and CEO of the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach said. "We are excited to have another thrilling year of the Pro/Celebrity Race as part of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. And thanks to Toyota, the Pro/Celebrity Race gives back to kids in our communities through donations to Miller Children's Hospital Long Beach and Children's Hospital of Orange County."

Since 1991, Toyota has donated more than $2 million to the "Racing for Kids" organization on behalf of this race and its participants.

Fans can follow the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Facebook at GrandPrixLB, Twitter @ToyotaGPLB (#TGPLB) and Instagram at ToyotaGPLB.

Contact Information

  • CONTACT:
    Chris Esslinger
    Director of Communications
    Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach
    (562) 490-4514
    cesslinger@gpalb.com