For over a decade, Buddy Lazier has been a professional racer who has made an impact at the Indy 500. He won the race in 1996 and has four other Top 5 finishes. He also won the IndyCar Series championship in 2000. This year he raced in his 18th race at the age of 46, but finished in 32nd place overall. Sponsored by Delta Faucets over the years in a distinctive purple car – one of the Finest Faucets that you can get for your kitchen, racing might be in his Lazier’s vision 24/7, but he’s more concerned about the vision of his daughter than he is with racing.
You see, Lazier’s daughter Jacqueline doesn’t have any sight in her right eye. She was born with Aniridia, which means she doesn’t have an iris in her eyes. Without the iris, it makes it difficult for her to focus on objects, increases her overall sensitivity to light, and puts her at risk for other eye conditions that aren’t normally seen until older ages.
Lazier loves to race… but he uses his racing as a means of getting his daughter the help she needs.
That’s What Brought About a Change
If you watched the 2014 Indy 500, then you likely saw the decals on Lazier’s car supported a vision institute from the University of Iowa. The whole point is to give this institute the public support it needs to develop advances in medical science that will promote vision. Even though Lazier readily admits that his daughter hasn’t benefited from the research as of yet, he has full confidence that one day his daughter will get to experience the benefits of their research.
Lazier isn’t the only one supporting this research in a big way. Steve Wynn, who people know from his Wynn resorts in Las Vegas, also suffers from a degenerative eye problem that is slowly taking his vision away. He donated eight figures to the same institute that Lazier supported during his race in the last year alone.
Jacqueline’s eye problems aren’t stopping her from following her passions, however, and that’s an encouraging thing to Lazier. She’s a racer, just like her dad.
What Keeps Motivating Lazier To Race?
For Lazier, racing is more than a job or just a way to raise money for his daughter. It’s also a personal family passion that has been developed through the ages. His dad raced in 1981. It’s about wanting to show people that personal goals can always be achieved, no matter what individual circumstances might be.
Buddy has a sponsorship deal that will have him in the Indy 500 for the next 5 years thanks to the formation of Lazier Partners Racing, a conglomeration of friends and supporters from Lazier’s hometown of Vail, CO. They decided that there was nothing to lose and everything to gain, so they all took this attitude out to the track.
With hardly any practice time, Lazier qualified last year and has been the final qualifier two years running. Lazier wouldn’t have it any other way and he knows that his experience in the race and his ability to raise awareness will only help to do good things for anyone who is inspired by the work of his team.