Long Tradition Continues for Justice Brothers at Indianapolis 500

Iconic name celebrates 75 years of history at Indianapolis in 2020

INDIANAPOLIS (13 August 2020) – An Indianapolis Motor Speedway tradition older than the singing of “Back Home Again in Indiana” and the balloon release continues when the Justice Brother’s returns as a participant for the 75th for the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 next Sunday.

An international manufacturer of additives, lubricants, and cleaners, the Justice Brothers got their start in the automotive and racing world when Ed and Zeke Justice built their first race car in 1936.

The family-owned and operated automotive products business began its motorsports involvement at the local short track level.  The company relocated from California to Jacksonville, Florida in the late 1940s, sponsoring NASCAR pioneers including the Flock brothers, Lee Petty, Red Byron, Buck Baker, Curtis Turner and Fireball Roberts.

The Justice family has been involved in the Indianapolis 500 ever since 1946, when  Zeke Justice was a member of George Robson’s winning team. 

That first Indianapolis outing started the family legacy, and the Justice Brothers name has now been involved with more than 70% of all Indianapolis 500s ever run, making it one of many long-established traditions that are part of the history and lore of the once a year event.  “Back Home Again” was first part of the pre-race ceremonies the following year, with the balloon release first held in 1948. 

Bayless Leverett drove the first Justice Brother’s-sponsored entry in the 1949 Indianapolis 500, and drivers and teams sponsored by the Justice family reads like a “who’s who” in American motorsports, including Frank Kurtis, Johnnie Parsons, Freddie Agabashian, Jim Rathmann, the Granatelli brothers, Johnny Rutherford, A.J. Foyt, P.J. Jones, Andretti Autosport, Eddie Cheever, Steve Kinser, Buddy Rice, Buddy Lazier and Jeff Ward.

The family involvement has taken on a wide range of forms through the years at the Brickyard, from building cars for the race to being on the pit crews to team sponsorship. This year, the tradition continues with Justice Brothers sponsoring the two-car entry of Dreyer & Reinbold Racing as well as the single-car effort from Meyer Shank Racing.

The Justice Brother’s were sole sponsors of Frank Kurtis’s Indianapolis  car program, including 1950 Indianapolis  500 winner Parsons. Two years later, they sponsored the second-place finisher, the Granatelli brothers entry driven by Rathmann.

In the 1960s, the family teamed with legendary car builder A.J. Watson, whose cars won six Indianapolis 500s.

The 1970s brought a relationship with Jim Gilmore on Foyt’s legendary Coyote. The Justice family logo rode on the side of Foyt’s fourth 500 victory in 1977, and his 30th 500 in 1987. In recent years, the team has sponsored drivers including P.J. Jones, Townsend Bell, Sage Karam and J.R. Hildebrand.

In addition to the outstanding tradition at the Brickyard, Justice Brothers-sponsored entries have excelled in other forms of American motorsports. 

Last year, Justin Lofton became the first three-time overall champion of the Mint 400 off road race, while Brendan Gaughan and Jake Gaughan were Class 1 Champions of the Baja 1000. Justice Brothers sponsored Kalitta Motorsports NHRA Funny Car world titles for Del Worsham in 2015 and J.R. Todd in 2018. Their drag racing involvement dates back to being the first paid sponsor for the legendary Don Garlits.

In major American sports car competition, Wayne Taylor Racing’s CadillacDPi Prototypes captured the overall victory in the Rolex 24 At Daytona in 2017, 2019 and 2020. Justice Brothers also won the Prototype Challenge title at the prestigious event in 2016 and 2017. In addition, Justice Brothers-sponsored teams also won recent titles in Pirelli World Challenge, Lamborghini Super Trofeo and Porsche Trophy West.

Justice Brothers also backed Rhys Millen’s winning cars at Pikes Peak in 2015 and 2017, and sponsored the winning Dreyer & Reinbold Racing team to the 2016 Red Bull Global Rally Cross Lights championship.

“It is amazing to consider that the Justice Brothers name has been a part of this incredible race for 75 years,” said President and CEO of Justice Brothers, Inc., Ed Justice, Jr. “We’ve been fortunate to have Justice Brothers factory teams win everywhere from Daytona to Pikes Peak, but Indianapolis is really something special,  as we’ve been a part of it for so long. We’ve done a little bit of everything at Indianapolis through the years, and it is impossible to say how much this race means to our company and to our family. We’re really excited for this year’s race even though it is being run under such different circumstances.” 

 The 104th Indianapolis 500 will be broadcast live on NBC starting at 1:00 PM ET on August 23rd. 

Connect with us on:
Facebook: JusticeBrothersInc
Twitter: @JusticeBrosInc
Instagram: justicebros

About Justice Brothers:
Justice Brothers, Inc. is a manufacturer and worldwide distributor of over 100 car care products, fleet, farm, and industrial lubricants and cleaners. Since their beginnings in the additive industry, the Justice Brothers Corporation has been an innovator in the development of new and better products to solve problems in the automotive service industry. During their over 85 years in the automotive industry, Justice Brothers has built a large and loyal customer base that encompasses quick lubes, dealerships, and independent auto stores.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com


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