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Disney•Pixar's "Cars 3" comes to life at Sonoma Raceway this summer

Disney•Pixar's "Cars 3" cruises into theatres this June, but gearheads and movie buffs alike can see the popular characters come to life at Sonoma Raceway during the Toyota/Save Mart 350, June 24-25.

Road to the Races, a nationwide tour inviting fans of #95 Lightning McQueen to gear up for the upcoming big-screen release, will conclude its 27-city tour at Sonoma Raceway during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series weekend. Life-sized versions of three of the movie's stars will roll into the track to celebrate the latest movie from Pixar Animation Studios, which opens June 16, 2017.

NASCAR fans can picture themselves with life-sized versions of the big-screen characters in the interactive "Cars 3" Road to the Races display, which will be located inside the Turn 10 island on Saturday and Sunday of race weekend. Five-time Piston-Cup champion Lightning McQueen and tech-savvy trainer Cruz Ramirez will be on site Saturday and Sunday, while sleek next-gen racer Jackson Storm joins the party on Sunday only.

Tickets for the Toyota/Save Mart 350 start at just $35 on Saturday and $49 on Sunday; kids 12 and under are admitted free on Saturday and for just $10 on Sunday. Tickets can be purchased at sonomaraceway.com/NASCAR or 800-870-7223.

To further celebrate the premiere of the racing feature, comedian and actress Cristela Alonzo, the voice of the film's elite trainer Cruz Ramirez, has been named Grand Marshal of the Toyota/Save Mart 350.

Alonzo will be honored on Friday, June 23, at the Children's Champions Grand Marshal Banquet at beautiful Cline Cellars in Sonoma. The gala is a fundraiser for the Sonoma Chapter of Speedway Children's Charities. She will also take part in pre-race activities on Sunday, June 25, and will participate in the official command of, "Drivers, Start Your Engines."

"I'm so grateful to be the Grand Marshal and be part of such a not only fun, but special event," said Alonzo, who is the first woman to be named NASCAR Grand Marshal in Sonoma.

Alonzo made TV history in 2014, becoming the first Latina to create, produce and star in a network TV sitcom, "Cristela." She released her first hour stand-up special "Lower Classy" on Netflix earlier this year. She has also released "Some of the Hits," her first stand-up CD through Comedy Central. Cristela is based in Los Angeles and, when not on tour, can be found performing at various comedy clubs throughout Southern California.

"We are delighted to work with Disney and Pixar to bring 'Cars 3' to life for our race fans during NASCAR weekend in Sonoma," said Steve Page, Sonoma Raceway President & General Manager. "'Cars' is such an iconic brand, and it's exciting that our fans can enjoy the movie and then see the real thing at our event."

-- Sonoma Raceway --