General News & Notes

'Smoke' Can Drive Anything

(CONCORD, NC – MAY 17, 2021 – RIS) Tony Stewart, three-time NASCAR Cup champion, can drive pretty much anything he straps into. He has won sprint car races, midgets, Indy cars, and come very close to winning the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona in prototype racers. Tony Stewart (Smoke) recently attended a Doug Hawley drag racing school, then, if reports are accurate, made enough passes to get his Top Alcohol license and now has made enough Top Fuel passes for a Top Fuel license, even if he only keeps driving in test sessions.

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Volume 2021, Issue 5, Posted 9:47 PM, 05.17.2021

Capacity Restrictions Lifted at Charlotte May Races

Capacity Restrictions Lifted for Month of May Motorsports Events Including NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals This weekend and May 28-30 Coca-Cola 600 Weekend
(CONCORD, NC – MAY 14, 2021) With Gov. Roy Cooper’s latest executive order, Charlotte Motor Speedway can operate at full capacity for an action-packed motorsports month of May, including this weekend’s NGK NTK NHRA Four-Wide Nationals and Memorial Day Weekend’s Coca-Cola 600.

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Volume 2021, Issue 5, Posted 3:19 PM, 05.14.2021

Speedway Children's Charities' Charlotte Chapter Distributes $300,000 to Local Nonprofits

Santa Claus leads a group of nearly 250 children through Speedway Christmas during the Speedway Children's Charities (SCC) Charlotte chapter grant distribution event at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Thursday. SCC distributed $300,000 to area nonprofits that serve children in need. (RIS/John Davison photos)
The Charlotte chapter of Speedway Children's Charities, with support from the Kevin Harvick Foundation, distributed $300,000 to 30 area nonprofits Wednesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway
More than 250 children joined SCC officials and representatives from the area charities for a socially distant, drive-through holiday experience at Speedway Christmas
Fans can register to volunteer or donate to Speedway Children's Charities by visiting

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Volume 2020, Issue 12, Posted 11:13 PM, 12.17.2020

UTAH Residents Rip Up Fragile Bonneville Salt Crust

Save The Salt Once Again Bringing
Illegal Activity to the Attention of BLM Officials

Salt Lake City, UT—Last week a photo surfaced of two Utah residents, Cameron Ramage and Skyler Pittman, who took credit for driving recklessly on the Bonneville Salt Flats in a highly modified Ford Crown Victoria. They had made multiple hard-circling maneuvers, breaking through the thin salt crust and plowing ruts into its surface. The photo was posted on BF Goodrich’s national website and Facebook pages igniting hundreds of negative responses from the U.S. and international land speed racing community.

It initially appeared as though BF Goodrich (BFG) was endorsing the destructive conduct. Not so. When BFG corporate staff became aware of the situation, they took immediate steps to apologize on BFG social media platforms, then remove the posting and contact Save the Salt. BFG discovered that the two Utah residents pictured in the car had supplied the photo to BFG’s social media contractor, which then uploaded the image innocently, thinking the action shot showing company product was a publicity opportunity.

“We applaud BF Goodrich’s quick response in removing the posting once it became aware of the irresponsible act,” said Dennis Sullivan, President of the Utah Salt Flats Racing Association. “BF Goodrich has long ties to Bonneville and its tires have helped racers set land speed records over many decades. The company values this unique venue and has joined the racing community in efforts to restore the salt flats. To assist in the effort, the company is making a $5,000 donation to the Save the Salt Foundation.”

The photo which documents damage to the salt crust was posted on Mr. Pittman’s Facebook page on September 4, 2018. This is not the first time the two Utah residents have been to Bonneville. At least two other photos show the same vehicle. One in November 2016 shows the vehicle along with a similar car in standing water when driving on the salt flats is prohibited and the crust is especially vulnerable to damage.

Save the Salt representatives have notified officials at the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) of the incident and asked the agency to investigate further. Bonneville’s custodian, the BLM posts warnings about limited access to the salt flats but the directives are not always obeyed.

Another incident in 2016 drew the ire of the land speed racing community and the BLM. A small group of young Canadians called “High on Life” posted a Facebook video of men skiing behind an RV on water covering the salt flats. The video received enormous negative attention and federal officials were able to tie the group to illegal off-road activity on other federal lands as well. Several members were fined and banned from American public lands for five years. In both cases, Save The Salt was responsible for bringing this illegal activity to the attention of the BLM officials.

“The racing community urges the BLM to pursue violations of rules and regulations governing the Bonneville Salt Flats," said Save the Salt Foundation Vice Chairman Tom Burkland. “Enforcement will help send a message where signs and other warnings have proven to be insufficient mechanisms. The public must respect this environmental jewel.”

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Volume 2019, Issue 7, Posted 11:01 AM, 07.18.2019

Ticket Guardian Honors Fans at ISM Speedway

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. - Mar. 14, 2019 - TicketGuardian, a Protecht company, waved the checkered flag on an extraordinary second year as title sponsor of the TicketGuardian 500 NASCAR Weekend on Mar. 8-10, 2019, at ISM Raceway in Phoenix with a focus on fan engagement and support.

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Volume 2019, Issue 3, Posted 8:41 PM, 03.16.2019

Speedway Christmas By the Numbers: Millions of Lights, Thousands of Cars, Countless Memories Made

More than 3.5 million lights strung across more than 3.75 miles make Speedway Christmas presented by Disconnect and Drive a can't-miss attraction for fans looking to get into the holiday spirit.
-- For Immediate Release -- CONCORD, N.C.  –When Charlotte Motor Speedway opens its doors for the eighth annual Speedway Christmas presented by Disconnect and Drive this weekend, fans will be treated to the biggest and brightest holiday lights spectacle yet at the iconic speedway. Ushering in the return of one of the Southeast’s largest and most-anticipated holiday traditions, the show kicks off Saturday with the Egg Nog Jog, a holiday-themed 5K run through the lights, before visitors from across the country descend on the twinkling track for the drive-through show, which runs nightly through Dec. 31, but is closed Christmas Day.

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Volume 2018, Issue 11, Posted 10:13 PM, 11.15.2018

Johnson and Alonso Discuss Car Swap

JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE'S POWER OF PRIDE CAMARO ZL1,was joined by two-time Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso via Skype from Sao Paulo, Brazil during his media availability to discuss their impending ride swap in Bahrain. Full Transcript:

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Volume 2018, Issue 11, Posted 7:59 PM, 11.09.2018

Doug Herbert's B.R.A.K.E.S. Has Best Breakfast Ever

BRAKES Breakfast Biggest Yet at zMAX
(CONCORD, NC – APRIL 28, 2018 – RIS) The annual Nitro and Pancakes breakfast to benefit B.R.A.K.E.S., a free teen safe driving school, set records in every category Saturday morning. Held annually in the Don Schumacher Racing hospitality area, the fund raising event “was the biggest ever,” according to charity director Matt Reilly.

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Volume 2018, Issue 4, Posted 6:08 PM, 04.28.2018

Got DIRT? A Racing Film for the Ages. ..

March 6, 2018 Hollywood, CA - I had the great opportunity to preview the racing film, DIRT, by Forrest Films and ESX Entertainment that just happened to include a ton of trucks racing, mud and tempers flying, luxury cars drifting, logo placement, hugs dished out and some first class acting, filming, writing, music, with a few great ‘fake-outs’ and perfectly timed jokes. All the right people and their talents, desires and effort came to fruition in this captivating racing film…

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Volume 2018, Issue 3, Posted 7:43 PM, 03.08.2018

Speedway Children’s Charities’ Charlotte Chapter Distributes a Record $952,000 to 98 Area Charities

-- For Immediate Release -- The Charlotte chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities distributed a record amount of more than $952,000 to 98 Charlotte-area charities on Wednesday at a grant reception at Charlotte Motor Speedway
CONCORD, N.C. (Dec. 6, 2017) – In a special grant presentation on Wednesday, Speedway Children’s Charities officials announced that the nonprofit’s Charlotte Motor Speedway chapter distributed more than $952,000 in grants – a record number – to 98 charitable organizations in 11 counties throughout the Charlotte area.

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Volume 2017, Issue 11, Posted 10:45 PM, 12.06.2017

IMS - Red Bull Air Races at Indy

Red Bull Air Race World Championship on the Line This Weekend at IMS

INDIANAPOLIS, Thursday, Oct. 12, 2017 - With only one race left, four pilots from three continents remain locked in the fight for the 2017 Red Bull Air Race World Championship. Who will triumph to kiss the famous bricks in Indianapolis and take home the World Championship trophy?

After seven global races spanning eight months, the wait is almost over: This Saturday and Sunday, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway will host the Red Bull Air Race season finale for the first time. In a weekend packed with heart-stopping action, one name will join the legends who have made sporting history at the holy grail of motorsport. Will it be Martin Sonka of the Czech Republic, Yoshihide Muroya of Japan, Pete McLeod of Canada or America's own Kirby Chambliss?

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Volume 2017, Issue 10, Posted 5:07 PM, 10.13.2017

Isenberg’s Charger 500 Revs up Pennzoil AutoFair presented by Advance Auto Parts

Denver, North Carolina, native Robert Isenberg and his 1969 Dodge Charger 500 won Best of Show honors at Sunday's Pennzoil AutoFair presented by Advance Auto Parts at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
An R4 Performance red 1969 Dodge Charger 500 owned by Denver, North Carolina, native Robert Isenberg claimed Best of Show honors on Sunday after four days of family fun and entertainment including thousands of classic and modern cars from manufacturers across the world; Fans also enjoyed a Dodge ride-and-drive, fun foods from Levy Restaurants and the Hogway Raceway pig, duck and goat races
Peter Ashby’s red 1998 Toyota Supra was first runner-up; Bill Burnside’s blue 1966 Chevrolet Corvair Monza earned second runner-up honors

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Volume 2017, Issue 9, Posted 9:16 PM, 09.24.2017

10th Annual Steve McQueen Car & Motorcycle show 2017

Chino Hills, CA – The 10th Annual (Friends of) Steve McQueen Car & Motorcycle Show coincided with the Boys Republic’s 110th Anniversary of the school’s founding and combined - made for another incredible show with over 400 cars and scores of motorcycles all viewed by some 10,000 plus attendees.

I was given tickets to last year’s VIP dinner which was held the night before the Saturday show. I was smittened by the school and its charter, “Nothing Without Labor” after a personal tour after the Saturday show by the school’s executive director, Chris Burns, PhD. I found a few ways to help make the following year’s (2017) show a further success. I was able to garner a tour of Jay Leno’s Garage and fly-overs by Steve’s last owned aircraft, a 1945 Boeing PT-17 Stearman whose N number was his student’s number while he was a resident of the school. It is owned by Bill & Claudia Allen and flown in from their lovely Allen Airways Flying Museum located in San Diego. I got another surprise later in the story.

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Volume 2017, Issue 6, Posted 8:46 PM, 06.07.2017

AutoFair Returns to Charlotte Motor Speedway This Weekend

CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. 21, 2015) – [Track press release] For one weekend twice a year, families and car enthusiasts alike eagerly make their way to Charlotte Motor Speedway for a dose of automobiles and entertainment that can only be found at the AutoFair. The four-day event is known to feature one of the largest arrays of automobiles in the country, including one-of-a-kind vehicle displays in the Nationwide Showcase Pavilion. Read on to learn about all of the exciting elements coming to AutoFair Thursday – Sunday, Sept. 24-27.

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Volume 2015, Issue 8, Posted 8:44 PM, 09.24.2015

Austin and Ty Dillon to Kick Off Charlotte Motor Speedway's Action-Packed Fall Season at Aug 5 Free Fan Event

-- For Immediate Release -- Parade of More Than 30,000 Horsepower, Q&A and Autograph Session with NASCAR Drivers Austin And Ty Dillon, One-Day Ticket Deals and the Chance to Drive the Track Await Fans at Free Event
CONCORD, N.C. (July 30, 2015) – Richard Childress Racing drivers Austin and Ty Dillon will join Charlotte Motor Speedway officials as they wave the green flag on the speedway’s Fall Season of Speed at the seventh annual Parade of Power on Wednesday, Aug. 5. This free event marks the beginning of the action-packed fall motorsports schedule at the greatest place to see the race.

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Volume 2015, Issue 7, Posted 4:37 PM, 07.30.2015

Denise McCluggage, 1927-2015

Yesterday evening, as I checked my e-mail, I noticed a note from my friend Tim.

“You may have heard,” he succinctly wrote, “dear Denise passed today. Aren’t we blessed to have known her.”

It came as a thunderbolt. I hadn’t heard. Denise McCluggage had passed away. We didn’t see each other often the last few years, and while we lived thousands of miles apart, I felt I’d lost a family member.

And yet, as many people as Denise’s rich, full life had touched, I’m sure I wasn’t alone in feeling I’d lost a close friend. Denise knew everyone, and they were drawn to her energy, her knowledge, her beauty, her talent, and to her irrepressible charm.

Over the years, our paths crossed several times, most often at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and I hung out with her like a rock star groupie, devouring every story she shared, every memory, every joke. She illuminated a room with her grace.

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Volume 2015, Issue 5, Posted 6:35 PM, 05.07.2015

AutoFair Returns to Charlotte Motor Speedway This Weekend

Track Release: Top 10 Activities for the Entire Family to Enjoy at AutoFair This Weekend
CONCORD, N.C. – The world’s largest automotive extravaganza returns to Charlotte Motor Speedway this Thursday through Sunday, bringing with it the personal vehicles of NASCAR stars, high-flying stunts, lawn mower racing, a collector car auction, pristine automobiles from more than 50 clubs and so much more! Below are the top 10 activities the entire family can enjoy at AutoFair.

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Volume 2015, Issue 3, Posted 4:42 PM, 04.08.2015

Veteran journalist Reid joins LVMS as media relations manager

Veteran journalist Reid joins LVMS as media relations manager

LAS VEGAS – Neal Reid, a published writer for more than 20 years, has been named media relations manager at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the speedway announced on Friday.
            In his new role, Reid will help publicize events at all LVMS facilities including the Bullring and The Strip, assist with the speedway’s social media efforts, maintain and edit the speedway’s website and oversee all publications.

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Volume 2015, Issue 3, Posted 6:46 PM, 03.21.2015

Speedway Christmas Displays Already Lit at Charlotte Motor Speedway

From track releases - CONCORD, N.C. (Nov. 19, 2014) – It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at Charlotte Motor Speedway and a merry band of hard-working elves are keeping themselves busy bringing the infield Christmas Village to life before officials flip the switch on Speedway Christmas in just two weeks.

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Volume 2014, Issue 11, Posted 11:02 PM, 11.19.2014



Kia and B.R.A.K.E.S. Gear Up for National Teen Driver Safety Week (Oct. 19-25) to Raise Awareness for Free, Hands-On, Behind-the-Wheel Education

B.R.A.K.E.S. has trained more than 12,000 teens and their parents in 10 states

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Volume 2014, Issue 10, Posted 7:49 PM, 10.21.2014

Terry Chandler Donates Children's Dream Racer™ to Riley Hospital for Children

Terry Chandler Donates Children's Dream Racer™ to Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (August 29, 2014) – For Terry Chandler, 2014 has been a year of giving. The New Mexico-based businesswoman and her husband, Doug Chandler, are fully funding the Don Schumacher Racing Funny Car driven by Tommy Johnson Jr., and opted to utilize the body of the 10,000 horsepower racecar to raise awareness for pre-determined charities. However, Chandler's desire to give back to the community didn't stop there.

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Volume 2014, Issue 8, Posted 10:27 AM, 08.30.2014

Book Review: Magnolias, Sweet Tea, and Exhaust--a Book for All Fans

It all started with a Facebook message from someone I didn’t know.  She was a friend of a friend who had a new book coming out in July.  I was in the press box at Martinsville Speedway on that day and looking at the social media site while waiting for the race to begin.  She offered to send me a pre-release copy of the book.  What I found was one of the most comprehensive beginner’s books on NASCAR and being a fan.

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Volume 2014, Issue 7, Posted 12:21 AM, 07.02.2014

Charlotte Motor Speedway Announces Busy 2014 Schedule

-- For Immediate Release -- CONCORD, N.C. (Dec. 27, 2013)With nearly 100 days of racing, car shows, concerts and more already on the calendar, 2014 is shaping up to be another action-packed year at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The legendary 1.5-mile superspeedway, along with zMAX Dragway and The Dirt Track at Charlotte will entertain fans with NASCAR, NHRA and World of Outlaws races, millions of Christmas lights, monster trucks, anniversary celebrations and more.

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Volume 2013, Issue 12, Posted 6:24 PM, 12.29.2013

Pro Stock Champion Allen Johnson Sponsors B.R.A.K.E.S. Schools at Bristol

(School press release) Allen Johnson, the 2012 NHRA Mello Yello Pro Stock champion, has been a long-time supporter of B.R.A.K.E.S. (Be Responsible And Keep Everyone Safe), the organization founded by fellow drag racing champion, Doug Herbert. Thanks to Johnson’s commitment to helping B.R.A.K.E.S. save the lives of teenage motorists through the Teen Pro-Active Driving Schools offered free by the non-profit 3(c) organization, on the weekend of February 1-2, 2014 these nationally-acclaimed driving courses will be coming to legendary Bristol International Speedway in Bristol, TN for the first time.

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Volume 2013, Issue 11, Posted 9:03 AM, 11.12.2013

NC Highway Patrol Backs Doug Herbert's B.R.A.K.E.S.

State Highway Patrol Announces its Partnership with B.R.A.K.E.S.

Program Aimed at Reducing Teen Driving Deaths
First Raleigh Area Classes Nov. 23 & 24

(RALEIGH, NC – Oct 15, 2013) - Each year more than 5,000 teenagers lose their lives and 400,000 are injured across the United States in traffic collisions. In 2012, the State Highway Patrol investigated 9,503 injury collisions and 111 fatal collisions where the driver’s ages were between 15 and 19. Sadly, 33 teenage drivers lost their lives on North Carolina highways. Despite a 34% decrease when compared to the previous year, teen injuries and deaths continue to plague our society.

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Volume 2013, Issue 10, Posted 2:03 PM, 10.15.2013

Global Rallycross Highlights Busy Charlotte Motor Speedway Weekend

Second Week of Charlotte Motor Speedway's Autumn Full of Action

(CONCORD, NC – SEPT 20, 2013) With the Carlyle Tools NHRA Carolina Nationals now in our rear view mirrors, Charlotte Motor Speedway is prepared for a busy weekend of the AutoFair car show, Global Rallycross competition on the Dirt Track Sunday and Doug Herbert's B.R.A.K.E.S. proactive teen safe driving school all taking place around the property.


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Volume 2013, Issue 9, Posted 4:34 AM, 09.20.2013

Hovercraft, Rally Fighter Join Corvettes at Autofair

(From Speedway Press Release:CONCORD, N.C. - Sept. 17, 2013) – For years, the hovercraft has represented the ultimate in all-terrain vehicles, a futuristic mode of transport capable of traveling with ease over almost any type of surface. The prototype for just such a machine was unveiled Tuesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, where it will be on display as part of this weekend’s Charlotte AutoFair.

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Volume 2013, Issue 9, Posted 10:56 PM, 09.17.2013

B.R.A.K.E.S. and Kannapolis Intimidators Celebrate Father's Day

(KANNAPOLIS, NC - MAY 30, 2013) At one of their home games, a special kind of “doubleheader” will take place at CMC-NorthEast Stadium in Kannapolis, NC, thanks to the combined efforts of the Kannapolis Intimidators, the Class “A” Minor League affiliate of the Chicago White Sox, and B.R.A.K.E.S. (Be Responsible And Keep Everyone Safe).  With the purchase of a $6.00 regular admission ticket, the Intimidators will donate 50% of the ticket price to B.R.A.K.E.S., the non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization based in Charlotte, NC which offers their free, Teen Pro-Active Driving Course to young drivers between the ages of 15 and 19.

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Volume 2013, Issue 5, Posted 12:31 PM, 05.30.2013

Chris Economaki - 1920-2012

Friend, role model and good guy Chris Economaki passed away early Friday morning, joining the myriad racing stars in the firmament. Chris was a friend to all racers, whether just starting out or superstar and always cared deeply about the sport and people in it.

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Volume 2012, Issue 9, Posted 11:43 AM, 09.28.2012

B.R.A.K.E.S. Benefit Golf Tournament and Annual Dinner A Gathering of Stars

From Ultimate Garage Productions, For Immediate Release - On Thursday, September 13, professional stars of the National Hot Rod Association, many of their fans, honored guests, television personalities, and a very special keynote speaker from Hollywood’s “silver screen” converged in Concord, NC to take part in a unique “double feature” to help raise further awareness and essential donations for B.R.A.K.E.S. (Be Responsible and Keep Everyone Safe).

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Volume 2012, Issue 9, Posted 11:31 PM, 09.18.2012

Hundreds of Fans Take Part in Second Annual Laps for Life Blood Drive at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Get Ride Alongs

Hundreds of fans descended on Charlotte Motor Speedway Friday for the second annual Laps for Life event, paying tribute to those lost on 9/11 and supporting the American Red Cross with blood donations. Those who donated were given NASCAR Racing Experience ride alongs and tickets to Bojangles' Pole Night. 

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Volume 2012, Issue 7, Posted 11:05 PM, 09.07.2012




GLENDORA, Calif. (Aug. 20, 2012) – Larry Fisher has been named executive director of the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum presented by Automobile Club of Southern California at the Fairplex in Pomona, Calif., it was announced today by the museum’s board of directors. 

Fisher is a longtime automotive enthusiast, holding membership in the Society of Automotive Historians and himself a collector of vintage autocycles, motorcycles and microcars.  Most recently, Fisher was an interpretive, planning and experience design consultant providing expertise to cultural heritage institutions, parks and attractions.  He served as CEO and executive director of the Herreshoff Marine Museum/America’s Cup Hall of Fame in Providence, R.I.  Fisher also was a consultant to the president on the creation of the Experience Design Department for The Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village in Dearborn, Mich.

In his new position, Fisher will be responsible for administrative operations and fundraising efforts for the museum, which is located on the grounds of the LA County Fairplex complex, also home to historic Auto Club Raceway at Pomona.  He will also be responsible for the overall management of the museum’s two biggest fundraising events: the Holley NHRA National Hot Rod Reunion presented by AAA at Beech Bend Raceway in Bowling Green, Ky., and the NHRA California Hot Rod Reunion presented by Automobile Club of Southern California at Auto Club Famoso Raceway in Bakersfield, Calif.

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Volume 2012, Issue 7, Posted 8:40 PM, 08.20.2012

In The Pits-racing radio Expands to Two Hours Moves to ESPN

In The Pits-racing radio Expands to Two Hours Moves to ESPN

“Voice of Motorsports” To Air Over

Worldwide Leader in Sports Beginning This Saturday, August 18


WASHINGTON, D.C. – IN THE PITS-racing radio©, the popular weekly radio program broadcast from the Nation’s Capital and known nationally throughout the motorsports industry, is proud to announce its upcoming expansion to two hours and its move on the dial to SportsTalk 570, powered by ESPN, the Worldwide Leader in Sports.

“This is the natural next step in the evolution of our programming,” says Executive Producer and Host Larry O’Donohue.  “As our show increases in popularity and scope, it only makes sense that we expand our delivery mechanism.  ESPN and Sports Talk 570 enables us to do just that.”  

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Volume 2012, Issue 7, Posted 7:24 PM, 08.19.2012