Press Releases

DIS President Joie Chitwood III named Honorary Chairman for 2014 Induction Ceremony

DETROIT (April 30, 2014) -- Joie Chitwood III, president of Daytona International Speedway, will be the honorary chairman of the 26th Annual Motorsports Hall of Fame of America's Induction Ceremony to take place August 6 at The Fillmore Theater in Detroit.

Joie Chitwood IIIJoie Chitwood IIIChitwood has been president of International Speedway Corporation's (ISC) flagship motorsports facility since August 2010. He oversees all speedway activities including event entertainment, fan amenities and ticket sales. Chitwood is also a member of the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America's Board of Trustees. His grandfather, historic open-wheel race car driver and legendary showman Joie Chitwood, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2010.

"As the head of one of our sport's premier facilities and a member of a motorsport dynasty, we are proud to have Joie Chitwood serve as our honorary chairman this year," says Ron Watson, president of the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America. "He is one of the most respected motorsports executives in the country. Joie's participation marks the beginning of a dynamic partnership between the Daytona International Speedway and the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America."

In January, it was announced that the Hall of Fame will be relocating to the grounds of the 'World Center of Racing' by 2016.

"I'm honored to serve as the honorary chairman for the upcoming induction ceremony," Chitwood said. "The Motorsports Hall of Fame of America is a special place for me both personally and professionally. I had the privilege of having my father and son with me during my grandfather's induction in 2010. In addition, many of the inductees have strong connections to the 'World Center of Racing' and this iconic racing venue is going to be a fitting home to the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America beginning in 2016."

Continue Reading

Daytona International Speedway to be New Home of the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America

NOVI, MI and DAYTONA BEACH, FL – Two of the greatest names in racing soon will share the same address. The Motorsports Hall of Fame of America, motor racing's Cooperstown, announced today that it will move its operations and collection of historic racing machines and memorabilia from the Detroit area to the "World Center of Racing," Daytona International Speedway by January 2016.

Podium with Speyer, Chitwood, Watson Al Speyer (MSHFA Trustee), Joie Chitwood III (DIS President) and Ron Watson (MSHFA President) announce the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America will be moving to Daytona International Speedway.

The move coincides with the scheduled January 2016 completion of DAYTONA Rising, the speedway's $400 million frontstretch renovation project currently underway.

Plans call for the Hall of Fame's displays featuring cars, images, stories and bronze sculptures of 209 icons of American motorsports to be located in the Daytona International Speedway Ticket and Tours Building, which was formerly known as the "DAYTONA 500 Experience."

Vehicles and artifacts representative of the diversity of motorized competition celebrated by the Hall of Fame, including Open Wheel, Stock Cars, Motorcycles, Aviation, Drag Racing, Sports Cars and Powerboats, will be exhibited as a regular part of the tours admission at Daytona International Speedway all year long.

Continue Reading

Bardahl, Beadle, Bishop, Graham, Luyendyk, Teague and Wallace headline ‘14 Motorsports Hall of Fame of America induction ceremony

January 24, 2014 - The Motorsports Hall of Fame of America will induct its 26th class of racing legends Wednesday, August 6, 2014 at Detroit's historic Fillmore Theater. Those being honored include Ole Bardahl, Raymond Beadle, John Bishop, Ricky Graham, Arie Luyendyk, Marshall Teague and Rusty Wallace.

2014 MSHFA Class

"Once again, the depth and breadth of American motorsports is reflected in the 2014 class of inductees," says Ron Watson, president of the Motorsports Hall of Fame.

The Motorsports Hall of Fame of America is racing's Cooperstown, memorializing achievement in all forms of motorized competition. Over the years, 209 motorsports luminaries have been inducted. The 99-person nominating panel itself reads like a who's who of racing, including names like Mario Andretti, Don Garlits, Craig Breedlove and Richard Petty.

Continue Reading

Hall of Fame 2014 Class to be announced January 24 at Daytona

Finalists for the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America 2014 class have been determined. The Hall will unveil its seven new members on Friday, January 24 at Daytona International Speedway prior to the Rolex 24 at Daytona. The racing legends will join the Hall of Fame during the 26th Annual Induction Ceremony on August 6, 2014 at the Fillmore Theater in Detroit.

2014 Open Wheel nomineesIn the Open Wheel category, the nominees are veteran driver and official Wally Dallenbach, nine-time Indycar Series winning owner Chip Ganassi, championship owner Carl Haas, innovative designer and safety pioneer Ted Halibrand, two-time Indy 500 winner "The Flying Dutchman" Arie Luyendyk and three-time Indy winning owner Pat Patrick.

Quarter-milers on the ballot are "Blue Max" owner/driver Raymond Beadle, Mercury's racing boss Fran Hernandez, six-time NHRA Pro Stock Champion Warren Johnson, golden-voiced announcer Dave McClelland, pioneer Paula Murphy and one of the first Funny Car drivers Gene Snow.

2014 Motorcycle nomineesThe two-wheel set is represented on the ballot by fifteen-time AMA Grand National race winner Everett Brashear, off-road great Dick Burleson, ten-time Motocross champ Ricky Carmichael, three-time AMA flat track king Ricky Graham, three-time Daytona 200 winner Dick Klamfoth and two-time world Superbike champion Fred Merkel.

The ballot for the Stock Car inductee features the youngest member of the "Alabama Gang," Davey Allison and championship owners Richard Childress, Rick Hendrick and Jack Roush. NASCAR Cup champions Terry Labonte and Rusty Wallace are also up for consideration.

The At Large category is for boaters only in 2014. The nominees are accomplished racer and builder Donald Aronow, owner and promoter extraordinaire Ole Bardahl, winningest crew chief of the turbine era Ron Brown, championship racer and co-founder of the APBA Historical Society Buddy Byers, Jr., 3-time world champ Tom Gentry and ten-time Gold Cup winner Dave Villwock.

2014 Historic nomineesIn the Historic category, voters will decide between NASCAR's first champion Red Byron, land speed record holder John Cobb, Brickyard's first president Carl G. Fisher, 1963 Daytona 500 winner Tiny Lund, mechanic and builder Ray Nichels, midget and sprint car king Bob Sweikert and stock car champ Marshall Teague.

Sports Car contenders who made the ballot are IMSA founder John Bishop, four-time Trans Am champ Tommy Kendall, racer and broadcaster Sam Posey, Scarab's designer and builder Phil Remington, Chaparral driver and team manager Hap Sharp and driver/founder of the legendary "Group 44" teams Bob Tullius.

The Motorsports Museum & Hall of Fame of America is operated by the nonprofit Motorsports Museum and Hall of Fame of America Foundation Inc.

Lackey, Moore, Zanardi, Chrisman, Firestone, Gregory and Petersen inducted into Motorsports Hall of Fame of America

2013 MSHFA Honorees - 1st row: Bud Moore, Bob Riley, Brad Lackey and Alex Zanardi.  2nd row: Riddelle Gregory (for Masten Gregory), GiGi Carleton (for Robert E. Petersen), Steve Chrisman (for Jack Chrisman) and Nick Firestone (for Harvey Firestone).

DETROIT (August 22, 2013) – An illustrious and enthusiastic gathering of family, friends, race fans and motorsports legends and insiders came together in downtown Detroit last night, Wednesday, August 21, to usher in an equally impressive group of Silver Anniversary 2013 inductees at the 25th Annual Motorsports Hall of Fame of America Induction Ceremony at the historic Fillmore Theater.

The accomplished 2013 Silver Anniversary class included event attendees Brad Lackey (Motorcycles), Bud Moore (Stock Cars), Alex Zanardi (Open Wheel) and Bob Riley (Heritage Award), as well as friends, family members and colleagues that fittingly memorialized in presenting or accepting the honors for posthumous inductees Jack Chrisman (Drag Racing), Harvey Firestone (Historic), Masten Gregory (Sports Cars) and Robert E. Petersen (At Large).

Continue Reading

Ralph Gilles named Honorary Chairman for 25th Annual MSHFA Induction Ceremony

DETROIT (May 31, 2013) – Ralph Gilles, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) – SRT Brand and Motorsports, Chrysler Group LLC and Senior Vice President – Product Design, Chrysler Group LLC, has been named Honorary Chairman for the 25th Annual Motorsports Hall of Fame of America Induction Ceremony at the Fillmore Theatre in downtown Detroit on Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013.

Gilles picAs Honorary Chairman, Gilles will deliver the evening's keynote address at the black-tie ceremony prior to the induction of the Silver Anniversary class into the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America. This year's class includes Jack Chrisman, Harvey Firestone, Masten Gregory, Brad Lackey, Bud Moore, Robert E. Petersen and Alex Zanardi.

Bob Riley, chassis constructor and technology innovator, will receive the prestigious Bob Russo Motorsports Heritage Award during the ceremonies for his numerous contributions to racing.

"To be part of a ceremony recognizing the achievements of these icons of motorsports is an honor," said Gilles. "Add in the fact it's the Silver Anniversary Induction Ceremony of the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America will make the event even more memorable.

Continue Reading