“A Lady in Red” Makes a High-Performance Debut

IRVINE, Calif., June 6, 2002 – At a champagne reception today at the Saleen World Headquarters, President Steve Saleen handed over the keys to “a Lady in Red,” the first S7 road car, the beautiful mid-engine, exotic supercar produced by this American auto maker, to owners Jerry and Kathy Ritzow.

For the past year the S7 has been burning up the road circuits of America and Europe, winning four different GT Championships during 2001, a remarkable feat for an all-new car. And while the S7 continues its winning ways in 2002, and is set for a repeat appearance at the most prestigious endurance race in the world, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, where it placed third in class last year, the key ceremony is the fulfillment of a promise made by Steve Saleen at the very beginning of the S7 project.

“We will race the S7,” Saleen said, “because much of what we have learned about how to make a better performing Mustang for the street came from our racing. We will apply similar lessons from the S7 in competition to the street version we will produce.”

Manufacturing and marketing a fully DOT and NHTSA certified automobile isn’t easy and this is especially true of a small manufacturer like Saleen. But Saleen has been doing just this with his high-performance Mustangs since 1994.

“Some people don’t realize, Steve continued, “that the Mustangs we sell are certified for sale in all 50 states. That’s why the delivery of this car to Jerry and Kathy is such an important step for this company. No one else in America has done what we have done: Start with an initial concept and build a ground-up fully certified mid-engine supercar.”

“Besides being drop-dead gorgeous and offering incredible performance, we believed in Steve’s commitment to the S7 by being the first to put down a $100,000 deposit with our S7 dealer, Motorcars International,” said Jerry Ritzow. He and his wife live in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where Jerry founded an aquarium manufacturing company in 1967, which has grown to be the largest in the world.

Jerry has always been interested in fast cars, but during the last 10 years the interest has turned into a serious hobby. “Kathy and I both enjoy cool cars,” Jerry says, “and we’ve added a number of them to our collection over the last several years.”

In addition, Jerry has attended a number of racing schools including Buck Baker for stock car racing, Skip Barber for road racing and the Frank Hawley drag racing school.

Obviously, the first of many S7 to come has been handed over to four very enthusiastic and competent hands.

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