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Cooper signs up racer Johnny Unser as technical consultant

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Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. has teamed up with Indy Car racer Johnny Unser to promote its ultra-high performance and racing tires, including the new Zeon line.

Unser, son of racing veteran Jerry Unser and nephew of Al and Bobby Unser, will be a technical consultant for Cooper. He joined the Indy Car circuit in 1993.

The addition of Unser "will add valuable insight into the design and manufacture of tires purchased by consumers who value both performance and appearance," according to Carl Casalbore, vice president of retail sales and high performance tire development for Cooper.

"Our research shows that drivers expect control, handling, performance as well as style, speed and energy in their tires. Who better to help us meet those expectations in a tire than Unser, whose career depends on all of those attributes."

Unser will work closely with Cooper's technology, research and sales teams to help create and market tires that deliver great quality, outstanding performance and exceptional value. Unser's experience with race tire performance will help Cooper transfer that technology to the consumer market.

"The technology and highly engineered performance and design that give Cooper racing tires excellent handling and control capabilities can also be applied to everyday driving," says Unser. "My role is to work with Cooper engineers to develop the highest-value, ultra-high performance tires for both car enthusiasts and those who race for a living."

"Our distribution network tells us that consumers are becoming more interested in their tires, especially in the growing sports car, sport SUV, and performance-car markets," says Casalbore. "Today's drivers view tires as true extensions of their cars. So if they buy cars for safety, performance and style, they should expect the same in their tires."

Cooper's Avon motorsport tire development has resulted in new technology and performance attributes for its road tire brands in the United States and Europe. The Cooper-Avon Tyres Racing Division supplies race tires for F.I.A., Formula 3000 and the global Formula Ford series.

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