Former Portland Trail Blazer Martell Webster named grand marshal for Grand Prix of Portland

The sixth overall pick in 2005 NBA Draft will give the command for NTT INDYCAR SERIES drivers to start their engines on Sunday

PORTLAND, Ore. (Sept. 2, 2022) – Martell Webster, a former National Basketball Association player for the Portland Trail Blazers and Pacific Northwest high school basketball legend from Seattle, Wash., will be the grand marshal for Sunday’s Grand Prix of Portland at Portland International Raceway (PIR).

Webster, a small forward who played in the NBA for 10 seasons, was selected by the Trail Blazers directly from high school with the sixth overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft after starring at Seattle Preparatory School. He played in Portland for five seasons (2005-2010), averaging 8.5 points and 3.1 rebounds per game and spent his final NBA season with the Washington Wizards during the 2014-15 campaign.

“I’m a race fan and love to drive. I find getting lost riding motorcycles or driving sports cars is the best way to find myself,” said Martell Webster. “It’s going to be a memorable vibe being a part of such an amazing INDYCAR race here in Portland.”

“We are thrilled to announce that Martell (Webster) is joining us as grand marshal for the Grand Prix of Portland,” said Jerry Jensen, vice president and general manager of the race event. “Martell is admired in the Pacific Northwest both as an athlete and for his contributions off the court in the community, and we look forward to the excitement he’ll add to the race weekend.”

In addition to Sunday’s featured 110-lap (216.04 miles) NTT INDYCAR SERIES race, the ARCA Menards Series West is the Saturday headliner with a 5:30 p.m. PT green flag start. The Labor Day event weekend also includes races from all three series comprising the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires.

Other honorary positions will be filled by Olympic and world champion sprinter Fred Kerley and Teresa Wheeler, a community outreach representative from Columbia Credit Union. Kerley will help lead the NTT INDYCAR SERIES field to the green flag in the Ruoff Mortgage Fastest Seat in Sports, and Wheeler will serve as the race’s honorary starter waving the green flag at 12:30 p.m. PT on Sunday (Sept. 4th).

Tickets are still available for this weekend’s event and can be found at portlandgp.com. Children 12 and under receive free general admission to the event when attending with a ticketed adult. This also includes complimentary access to the NTT INDYCAR SERIES Paddock throughout the weekend.

About Grand Prix of Portland:

Portland International Raceway (PIR) is the home of the Grand Prix of Portland. PIR is a 1.964-mile, 12-turn permanent road course owned by the City of Portland and operated under the Portland Parks and Recreation. Opened in 1960 to host sports car and drag racing, the 268-acre property hosts over 550 events annually including automotive and motorcycle road racing, motocross, cruise-ins and other special events including the Rose Cup Races. PIR has been the site of many memorable Indy car races. Al Unser Jr. won the inaugural one in 1984, and the NTT INDYCAR SERIES returned in 2018 after an 11-year absence with Takuma Sato the winner and another Indianapolis 500 champion Will Power winning in 2019. The Father’s Day race of 1986 featured Mario Andretti victorious over his son Michael on the last lap by less than a second. The closest three-way road racing finish in INDYCAR SERIES history took place at PIR in 1997 when the top three were covered by just 0.055 of a second. The Grand Prix of Portland is owned and operated by Green Savoree Portland, LLC, whose affiliates also promote three additional INDYCAR SERIES races, Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg presented by RP Funding (Feb. 25-27, 2022), The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Presented by the All-New 2023 Civic Type R (July 1-3, 2022), and the Honda Indy Toronto (July 15-17, 2022).

For more information, visit portlandgp.com, ‘like’ its Facebook page @PortlandGP or follow updates on Twitter @Portland_GP and Instagram at @Portland_GP using #PortlandGP.

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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