Sunday, January 22, 2017

Rick & Linda Hendrick’s #NASCAR Hall of Fame Acceptance Speech

Rick & Linda Hendrick’s #NASCAR Hall of Fame Acceptance Speech After winning three championships as the owner of a drag-racing boat team, Rick Hendrick founded "All-Star Racing" in 1984 – the team that would later become Hendrick Motorsports. The organization has won a record 12 premier series championships with drivers Jimmie Johnson (seven), Jeff Gordon (four) and Terry Labonte (one). Hendrick Motorsports has a total of 15 NASCAR national series titles, the most in NASCAR history. Overall, it boasts 245 premier series wins.

LINDA HENDRICK: This is an exciting night, not only for Rick and I but for our family, friends and employees who are here to share this special time. When Rick and I first met at a service station in Raleigh in 1971, we had no idea of the plans God had in store for us. We got married, and as the doors of opportunity opened, Rick embraced the challenges. He boldly and courageously walked through those doors and never looked back.

That was 46 years ago, and I stand here tonight as a proud wife because of his hard work and passion for racing with the honor, on this 20th day of January, 2017, to present the NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee ring inductee ring and officially induct my best friend and sweet husband, Rick Hendrick, into the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

RICK HENDRICK: I am so humbled to be here tonight. When I look around this room and look at the front row here and all of these legends that I grew up idolizing in a sport that I idolized. For me tonight to be able to go in with my good buddy Richard Childress, I'll never follow you again, Richard, never. I never want to follow you again.

Mark Martin. Mark, you make a difference. You've made a difference in every organization that you've ever been in, and you made a big difference in ours.

I'm a pretty good car salesman because I had to talk you and your wife into coming out of retirement to do the whole deal, but congratulations. It's well deserved.

Benny Parsons. Benny was one sweet man. He loved everybody. He lifted everybody. He was such an ambassador to our sport. He was a champion, but he was a champion in the booth. He was a champion person. And when you go through life and no one has anything to say ugly about you, can say anything negative, then you are a true champion, and Benny was that guy.

And to the Parks family, I've read about him, and I've watched the videos, and we surely wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for him. What he's done for our sport, to get us to this place, it's amazing, so congratulations to you. Well-deserved, he should have been in a long time ago.

To my wife Linda, I don't know if you remember this, I'm sure you do, 44 years ago this month, we swapped rings. So this ring is as much for you as it is for me, because there's nobody that's sacrificed what you've sacrificed for me to do what I've done. She stood in the back of the grocery store with me, and we counted our money before we went to the checkout line. Our bed in our first house had three legs and Muncie four-speed gearbox for the fourth leg.

When we were boat racing, she was selling tee shirts out of the back of the trailer so we could raise enough money to go back and do it again. So she sits in church on Sunday, so many Sundays by herself when I've been gone for 44 years doing what I love.

Tonight, this is as much yours, probably more, than it is mine. I love you, and thank you for all you've done.

To Jeff and Jimmie, thank you for that introduction. You two champions have been so instrumental in helping me and being such great role models, not just the champions that you are but what you've done outside of the car. You have been a great role model for a lot of people.

Tonight I'm very blessed, I've got my daughter Lynn, my three grandchildren here, Ricky, Kate and Hendrick, and Emily and Tyler and Cathy and just all of my family is here, cousins. So I'm sharing it tonight. It's about my family. I'm sharing it with them.

One of the coolest things I have is my three grandchildren interviewed me for the Hall of Fame tonight on video, so I can't wait to let them grow up and see that. This has been a special night for me, and it's just really hard for me to believe that a kid growing up on a tobacco farm in rural Virginia that dreamed about racing, just racing in hotrods and waiting for Linda, you know, those were the three things, and always wanting to be involved in racing somehow.

But I was -- I didn't know what I wanted to do in life, but I knew what I didn't want to do, and that was be a tobacco farmer. But I wouldn't take anything for the time that I spent with my mom and dad. They taught me something that really has been the pillar of my life, and that is you need to take care of other people if you want people to take care of you. You need to take care of your neighbors, and you need to do for others, and then good things will happen to you.

You know, God really blessed me by giving me terrific parents. My dad taught me how to work with my hands. It was racing that got me in the automobile business, and I think back to all the lessons. I've got a lot of friends here tonight that are bankers. My mother taught me how to borrow money. I'm very good at that.

I think back to Linda and I moving to Charlotte and I was selling parts to all the race teams that weren't funded, and I got a call one day when Richard Broom and I were drag boat racing, and we were looking for a sponsor, and Max Muhleman called me, and he said, would you like to own a race team with maybe C.K. Spurlock, the All-Star Race, and Richard Petty would be the driver? And I thought, is this a trick question? Am I really -- are you serious?

Well, the All-Star part, Richard was smart, he didn't come aboard. Richard, how many championships would you have won then? Would it be more than seven? I'm just kidding. But anyway, I met this guy, Harry Hyde, who was a better salesman than I am. Harry Hyde convinced me if he could build one car that he could go win a race, and I believed it. And when we formed All-Star Racing in that little tin building on the hill, we had five employees. I was renting the transmissions, renting the equipment, and Harry was making $500 a week.

And we raced for six races with Geoff Bodine, and I said, Harry, we wrecked Darlington, and I said, I can't go any further. If we don't get a sponsor we've got to close the doors.

Now, true story, Linda is here. I had promised her we'd go to a revival. So on the Martinsville race, the seventh race, I was in church, and I went to a pay phone after church, and I called my mother, and I said, mom, how the race ended up in Martinsville. She said, you didn't hear? And I said, no. She said, Geoff blew up, and I said, blew up, okay. She said, no, he won. I said, he won the race? So everybody was wrapping his yard in toilet paper.

But I think I had divine intervention that day because I was in church.

But we got a sponsor that year, and kind of the rest is history.

You know, when I think about accepting this award tonight, I think about all the people that have been involved in motorsports, and I can't name them all. I won't even try, like Richard, with putting the names on the wall. You know who you are. Every person in the very beginning to today, everyone that laid a brick is part of this, and it's the same thing we talk about in the automobile business. It's together, we achieve more, working together. Dale said it. I believe that with all my heart.

I love this sport. I love the fact that we are a family. I love the fact that when I had the tragedy that all these folks, Richard Childress included, every owner, everybody in the garage reached out to us, and they were there for us. We compete on Sunday, but we are there for each other in a time of real tragedy.

And I remember, Richard will remember this, there was a movie about it. Bill France called us down to Florida, and he pinned our ears back like I've never had anybody talk to me in my life. But the day I was diagnosed with leukemia, shortly thereafter, he walked in the front door of my house, and he said, I just want to look at you and make sure you're okay. So that's the kind of direction we had with NASCAR, but at the same time, there was an awful lot of love inside this room.

I humbly accept this tonight, and all the drivers that have been involved in our company, all the mechanics, everybody that's ever been a part of it, I accept this on your behalf, past and present. I know my son is watching tonight, and he's so proud. Congratulations to Jimmie for winning No. 7, dedicating it to him. It's something those folks we lost will always be big in our heart.

But I can tell you that the feelings that I have for this sport and for all the people in it, all the sponsors, and I've got so many here tonight I can't name them all, don't want to do that, but it's your faith, it's your family and your friends that get you through life, and that's the most important thing. When it's all over, it's the people that you touch and the lives you change that make a difference in this world.

Now, to Dale and Chase and the rest of our gang, Kasey and Jimmie, I'm not retiring, so that doesn't mean we're not going to go win some more races, so it's not over. So we're going to -- and to William Byron, all these young guys, keep me pumped up.

I'm the luckiest guy in the world because of my family, because of the friends I've met in this sport. I thank you, and God bless you, and thank everyone who voted for me and all the fans because this is an honor that I will never, ever forget. Thank you.

Richard Childress (left) and Rick Hendrick pose for a photo prior to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Welcome Dinner.
Richard Childress (left) and Rick Hendrick pose for a photo prior to
the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Welcome Dinner.

Richard Childress (left) and Rick Hendrick shake hands after receiving their Hall of Fame jackets.
Richard Childress (left) and Rick Hendrick shake hands
after receiving their Hall of Fame jackets.

Rick Hendrick (right) and former NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon share a moment.
Rick Hendrick (right) and former NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon share a moment.

Rick Hendrick speaks during the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Induction Ceremony.
Rick Hendrick speaks during the NASCAR Hall of Fame
Class of 2017 Induction Ceremony.

Rick Hendrick poses on the red carpet with his wife Linda.
Rick Hendrick poses on the red carpet with his wife Linda.

NASCAR Hall of Famer Junior Johnson (left) and NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Rick Hendrick
NASCAR Hall of Famer Junior Johnson (left) and
NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Rick Hendrick

Rick Hendrick and family during the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Induction Ceremony at NASCAR Hall of Fame on January 20, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Rick Hendrick and family during the NASCAR Hall of Fame
Class of 2017 Induction Ceremony at NASCAR Hall of Fame
on January 20, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The living members of the NASCAR Hall of Fame gather as a group at the conclusion of the 2017 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at NASCAR Hall of Fame on January 20, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The living members of the NASCAR Hall of Fame gather as a group at the
conclusion of the 2017 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at NASCAR
Hall of Fame on January 20, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina.



Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images
Source: NASCAR.com Release


 


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Saturday, January 21, 2017

Richard Childress’ #NASCAR Hall of Fame Acceptance Speech

Richard Childress’ #NASCAR Hall of Fame Acceptance Speech A man from humble beginnings, Richard Childress bought his first race car for $20 at the age of 17. He turned that purchase into a NASCAR dynasty, winning six premier series championships with NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt from 1984-2000.

Overall, Childress ranks second all-time with 11 titles across NASCAR’s three national series. His Richard Childress Racing team has won 105 NASCAR premier series races.

RICHARD CHILDRESS: Thank you. How great is that, to have your wife and your two grandsons to induct you into the NASCAR Hall of Fame? Proud of you two guys.

I am honored to go into the NASCAR Hall of Fame with my heroes. Just look around this wall and look at the greats that we'll be going in the Hall of Fame with. Unbelievable. And to go in the Class of 2017 with so many great inductees is quite an honor.

Raymond Parks, a pioneer car owner, who paved the way for owners like Rick Hendrick and myself; Benny Parsons, a great driver and a champion; Mark Martin, you deserve to be in the Hall of Fame, buddy. You can win at anything. And Rick Hendrick, my friend, what an honor to go in this Hall of Fame with you. You're a champion. You did so much for this sport. It's an honor to go in with you. Thank you. Congratulations to all of the inductees tonight.

I'd like to start out by saying only in America. Only in America could a kid selling peanuts and popcorn at Bowman Gray Stadium have a dream of becoming a race driver some day, and then he goes out and buys him an old '47 Plymouth, pays $20 for it, that was the best investment I ever made, and have a dream of being a NASCAR driver some day, be standing up here tonight to be inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Only in America. What a great country we live in.

When I was asked, what do you want to put in the NASCAR Hall of Fame museum, I said, I'd like to put a 10-foot by 20-foot granite wall with thousands of names etched in it that's helped me all along the way to get here tonight. I can't thank you all, but I want to put you on a great granite wall to where I can thank you for getting us up here.

But on that granite wall, the first thing would be my family. My wife Judy, my daughter Tina, my son-in-law, Mike Dillon, grandson Ty and his wife Haley, she's here tonight. Grandson Austin and his fiancé, Whitney Ward. I couldn't have done it without you all's support. We are a NASCAR racing family.

Also on that wall would be the sponsors. They've helped build RCR along the way. I've built some great relationships and some great friendships along the way. Some have been with us for over 20 years, Chevrolet for 47 or 48. You know, Jim Campbell, Mark Reuss, are here tonight with Chevrolet. Thank you for all your support. Johnny Morris, thank you, with Bass Pro Shops, for all your support. Bill Jordan, Team Realtree, Ben Rilings with Coca-Cola, I remember taking that car in the '90s with Dale and Dale Jr. and introducing it with Coca-Cola on it.

And we also have Michael Gaughan, a good friend of mine, South Point Hotels and Casinos, John Menard with the Menard's stores, and Doug Oberhelman with Caterpillar and J. R. Jones with Rheem. They have been with us for years.

Also tonight we have our new partners carrying RCR to the next level. I'm so proud of them. Dow, Grainger, VF Imagewear, AAA, and American Ethanol. I will always be grateful for your support and for your support in the coming years.

Also on that wall would be the drivers, drivers like Ricky Rudd, Jeff Burton, Kevin Harvick. He was there when we needed him. Mike Skinner, Robby Gordon and Clint Bowyer, just to name a few. Also tonight, we have some of our current drivers here. We have Paul Menard. Paul, one of my favorite wins was winning Indy and watching your family and being with your family up there. That was awesome.

Ryan Newman, Austin and Ty Dillon, Brandon Jones, and Brandon Gaughan. I couldn't have been here without you. They tell me we had 68 drivers over these 47 years.

But there's one driver in particular, Dale Earnhardt. I wouldn't be standing here tonight without him. He was a great friend and a huge loss to all of us and to our sport. I knew Dale for over 25 years. We spent 18 seasons together racing. I have so many great memories. Winning our first championship, winning the Daytona 500, Indy, and many more.

He is a seven-time NASCAR champion.

But most of all, he's a champion to all of his fans, his friends and his family. I've got so many Dale stories, I was asked to tell a Dale story.

The only one I can think of that really stands out, it's the first time I met Dale and we were racing. We were racing down at Metrolina Speedway on the Grand National race that Ned Jarrett put together that day, and was coming into Turn 3, Cale Yarborough and myself was racing for the win, and we got together going into Turn 3. I made it back around and won the race.

After the race we was standing there having us a few cool ones, Dale was there, and in his ol' Dale Earnhardt style, he walked over, poked me in the chest, and he said, next time I race with you, I will win. What history never knew from that day.

Great times.

That's where our friendship began and lasted many years.

And then the France family would be on that wall, as well. I've got to tell a quick story. Bill Sr., 1969 when we had the boycott in Talladega, I'd ran the race on Saturday, and he gave us the deal money back then to come and race plus what you'd win in the purse. When the boycott happened he stood on that bench down there, and he said, boys, if y'all race tomorrow, I'll give you more deal money and you can take the purse. I left that day with probably more money than I'd ever seen at once in my life, probably 3 or 4 thousand dollars. I didn't think I'd ever have to work again. Hell, I'm still working. That was the break that really helped RCR get going. I'll never forget it.

He also gave me a letter, and he said, if you ever need anything, you show this letter to my family, and they'll take care of you. If I'd have knew what I know today, I'd have made a lot of copies because I've been in a lot of trouble.

And today, taking this sport to the next level, is the France family of today, Jim France, Brian France, Lesa France Kennedy, and Ben, I know you're going to be right there.

Also, my friend Mike Helton. Call him a friend although he's fined me a whole lot, sent me out a lot of things, but he's a true friend. And thank all the NASCAR employees for everything they've done over the years for us. None of this would be possible without all of them.

Also on the granite wall would be the hundreds of employees with RCR and ECR. I couldn't stand here or I'd be here all night thanking them all. But I was very fortunate and I am very fortunate to get to work with each and every one of them every day, and all of my friends, a lot of them are here tonight, came a lot of long distances, for supporting me over the years throughout my career.

I've got to thank the millions of fans that support NASCAR racing. Without our fans, none of us would be here tonight.

Last but not least, our military, for protecting our country and giving us freedoms that we've got.

I'd like to close by thanking the NASCAR Hall of Fame and its members, Winston Kelley and your staff. You do a great job, and the voting members, thank you again, and I'm very fortunate in my life, and I'm humbled and honored to be inducted in this NASCAR Hall of Fame.

Thank you, and God bless America.

Richard Childress and family during the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Induction Ceremony at NASCAR Hall of Fame on January 20, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Richard Childress and family during the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class
of 2017 Induction Ceremony at NASCAR Hall of Fame on
January 20, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Richard Childress (left) and Rick Hendrick pose for a photo prior to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Welcome Dinner. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Richard Childress (left) and Rick Hendrick pose for a photo prior to
the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Welcome Dinner.

Richard Childress (left) and Rick Hendrick shake hands after receiving their Hall of Fame jackets.  (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Richard Childress (left) and Rick Hendrick shake hands
after receiving their Hall of Fame jackets.

Richard Childress speaks during the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Induction Ceremony.  (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Richard Childress speaks during the NASCAR
Hall of Fame Class of 2017 Induction Ceremony.

Richard Childress poses on the red carpet with his wife Judy. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Richard Childress poses on the red carpet with his wife Judy.

The living members of the NASCAR Hall of Fame gather as a group at the conclusion of the 2017 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at NASCAR Hall of Fame on January 20, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The living members of the NASCAR Hall of Fame gather as a group at the
conclusion of the 2017 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony at NASCAR
Hall of Fame on January 20, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina.


Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images 
Source: NASCAR.com Release 

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Friday, January 20, 2017

For Hendrick Family, One Win Stands above the Rest

For Hendrick Family, One Win Stands above the Rest Through all the highlights, the wins and championships, there is one moment in Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick’s career that will always stand out.


For Hendrick Family, One Win Stands above the Rest - #NASCAR


In 2001, Ricky Hendrick – Rick and Linda’s late son – found Victory Lane in the NASCAR Truck Series for his first career win.

“The most important race we’ve ever won – the highlight of our racing career,” Linda Hendrick said. “It can’t be put into words what that meant to us, and it’s something that can never be taken away from us. That’s certainly at the top of the list.”

It was Saturday, July 7, and it was the very first truck race at Kansas Speedway.

Ricky Hendrick’s crew chief, Lance McGrew, noted the track was new to everyone, meaning veteran drivers had less of an advantage. That helped level the playing field for Hendrick, a series rookie.

“It was all new – everybody was on the same page,” he said. “We just unloaded, and we were fast from the get-go.”

"The most important race we've ever won -- the highlight of our racing career." Linda Hendrick

After narrowly missing the pole position, Hendrick drove his No. 17 truck to the front multiple times throughout the day, taking the lead for the final time with 24 laps to go.

But the second-place competitor was mounting a charge.

“We had a big lead, but he was catching us and catching us and catching us, and I was sweating it,” McGrew recalled. “I was on the pit box and remember thinking, ‘I know that they can hear my heart beating over all these trucks.’”

The crew chief said that wanting the win so badly made the white flag lap “grueling,” but when the checkered flag flew, the wave of relief and excitement was palpable.

“I just remember how nervous we were coming down to the end of that race,” Rick Hendrick said, “and when he got out of the truck and we all embraced and we were all crying, how special it was.”

Both Rick and Linda Hendrick were at the race, and together they made their way to Victory Lane.

“I never missed any of Ricky’s races,” Linda Hendrick said. “I was thrilled that we could be there together and experience it as a family. I can’t put into words what it felt like to be there. We cried, we laughed – it was just very, very special.”




For Rick Hendrick, one of the most memorable moments of the win came after the family left Victory Lane.

“Going into the media center and watching him up there on the stage talking about the race and getting questions from the media, it was so special because I can remember when he was just old enough to talk, talking about racing,” he said. “It ran in his blood.”

McGrew said it was clear at the time just how important the win was for Ricky and the Hendrick family and called it “hands down, my favorite” win of all time.

“Now that we don’t have him with us anymore, that race is even more of a treasure,” Linda Hendrick said. “It’s something that we’ll always cherish, being there with him and seeing him so excited to win his first race.”

As Rick Hendrick prepares to for Friday night’s NASCAR Hall of Fame induction ceremony, he said there has been “a river of emotions,” and he can’t help but think of his son, that race and the moments they spent together.

“When he first started to be able to say words, they were ‘car’ and ‘race,’ and he wrote little poems at school about one day driving,” he said. “When you get to an event like this and you look at what the sport has meant to you and your family, you think about those things.

“I know he’ll be watching.”

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NASCAR HOF - Class of 2017 Inductees

NASCAR HOF - Class of 2017 Inductees
#NASCAR HOF - Class of 2017 Inductees

 

 Richard Childress

Long before he became one of the preeminent car owners in NASCAR history, Richard Childress was a race car driver with limited means. Childress, the consummate self-made racer, was respectable behind the wheel. Between 1969-81 he had six top-five finishes and 76 top 10s in 285 starts, finishing fifth in the NASCAR premier series standings in 1975. Having formed Richard Childress Racing in 1972, Childress retired from driving in 1981. He owned the cars that NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt drove to six championships and 67 wins between 1984-2000. In addition to Earnhardt’s championships, Childress drivers have given him five others. Childress was the first NASCAR owner to win owner championships in all three of NASCAR’s national series, and his 11 owner titles are second all time. Childress also owned the vehicles driven by NASCAR XFINITY Series driver champions Clint Bowyer (2008) and Austin Dillon (2013), as the 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver champion Austin Dillon.

Rick Hendrick

The founder and owner of Hendrick Motorsports, Rick Hendrick’s organization is recognized as one of NASCAR’s most successful. Hendrick Motorsports owns an all-time record 11 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car owner championship titles – six with Jimmie Johnson, four with Jeff Gordon and one with NASCAR Hall of Famer Terry Labonte. Hendrick also has 14 total NASCAR national series owner championships, most in NASCAR history. Gordon and Labonte combined to win four consecutive titles from 1995-98. In 2010, Johnson won a record-extending fifth consecutive championship. Hendrick also owned the car driven by 2003 NASCAR XFINITY Series driver champion Brian Vickers. Hendrick’s 242 owner wins in the premier series rank second all-time.

Mark Martin

He is often described as the “greatest driver to never to win a championship,” but Mark Martin’s legendary career is so much more than that. He came incredibly close to that elusive title many times – finishing second in the championship standings five times. Over the course of his 31-year premier series career, Martin compiled 40 wins (17th all time) and 56 poles (seventh all time). Martin saw success at every level of NASCAR.  He won 49 times in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, holding the series wins record for 14 years. He retired with 96 wins across NASCAR’s three national series, seventh on the all-time list. In 1998, Martin was named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers.

Raymond Parks

Raymond Parks is one of stock-car racing’s earliest – and most successful – team owners. Funded by successful business and real estate ventures in Atlanta, Parks began his career as a stock-car owner in 1938 with drivers Lloyd Seay and Roy Hall. His pairing with another Atlantan, mechanic Red Vogt, produced equipment good enough to dominate the sport in the late 1940s and early 1950s. Red Byron won the first NASCAR title (modified, 1948) and first premier series title (1949) in a Parks-owned car. Parks’ team produced two premier series wins, two poles, 11 top fives and 12 top 10s in 18 events.

Benny Parsons

Benny Parsons won the 1973 NASCAR premier series championship and could be called an everyman champion: winning enough to be called one of the sport’s stars but nearly always finishing well when he wasn’t able to reach Victory Lane. He won 21 times in 526 career starts but finished among the top 10 283 times – a 54 percent ratio. One of Parsons’ biggest victories came in the 1975 Daytona 500. He was named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers in 1998. Parsons also was known as a voice of the sport making a seamless transition to television following his NASCAR career. He was a commentator for NBC and TNT until his passing in 2007, at the age of 65.

Following the ceremony, a special NASCAR Fan Appreciation Day will take place at the NASCAR Hall of Fame on Saturday, January 21, 2017.



#NASCAR HOF - Class of 2017 Inductees


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#NASCAR HOF - Class of 2017 Inductees

Thursday, January 19, 2017

KBM’s #NASCAR Truck #51 Program

KBM’s #NASCAR Truck #51 Program

Kyle Busch, Todd Gilliland, Myatt Snider, Harrison Burton Will Share the #51

Kyle Busch, Todd Gilliland, Myatt Snider, Harrison Burton Will Share the #51 #NASCAR


Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) announced that owner-driver Kyle Busch will compete in five NASCAR Camping World Truck Series events in 2017. Busch’s No. 51 Tundra will carry primary sponsorship from Textron Aviation, an aircraft industry leader that provides its customers with the most versatile and comprehensive general aviation product portfolio in the world. KBM will promote Textron Aviation’s Cessna, Hawker and Beechcraft brands.

Busch ranks second on the Truck Series All-time win list with 46. The Las Vegas native has been victorious in a remarkable 34.6 percent (46/133) of his starts since debuting in NASCAR’s third division in 2001 and has finished first or second 52.67 (70/133) percent of the time. ‘Rowdy’ collected two wins and three top-five finishes across four Truck Series starts in 2016. His 170 all-time combined NASCAR national series wins rank second to NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty (200).

“We are very excited to have Textron Aviation and the Cessna, Hawker and Beechcraft brands as new partners for my five races in the Truck Series for 2017,” Busch said. “Textron Aviation’s commitment to multiple teams across multiple levels in NASCAR shows that they are a company that knows how to build successful programs and I’m looking forward to seeing our program take off at Atlanta.”





Kyle Busch, Todd Gilliland, Myatt Snider, Harrison Burton Will Share the #51 #NASCAR


The 2016 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West champion Todd Gilliland will compete in four NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races in 2017 with primary sponsorship from Toyota – the world’s top automaker. Gilliland, who competed in seven Super Late Model races for KBM in 2016, will make his Truck Series debut behind the wheel of the No. 51 Toyota Tundra June 17 at Gateway Motorsports Park in Madison, Ill.

The third-generation driver will also compete at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park in Bowmanville, Ont., Sept. 3, New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon Sept. 23 and Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway Nov. 10.

With six victories this year in the K&N Pro Series West, the 16-year-old matched three other drivers for the series record for most wins in a single season and also collected six poles, 11 top-five and 13 top-10 finishes en route to becoming the youngest champion in the history of any NASCAR national or touring series. The K&N West Series Rookie of the Year also competed in five K&N Pro Series East events in 2016, registering one win, one pole, three top-five and five top-10 finishes.

“I’m very excited for the opportunity to race in the Truck Series for KBM next year and it wouldn’t be possible without the support of everyone at Toyota and TRD,” Gilliland said. “Moving up into the top levels of NASCAR is going to be a learning experience, but I know that I’m getting behind the wheel of fast Tundras and with the staff that they have in place at KBM and the knowledge that Kyle can pass along I’m going to learn a lot and continue to grow as a driver.”






Kyle Busch, Todd Gilliland, Myatt Snider, Harrison Burton Will Share the #51 #NASCAR


Myatt Snider will compete in eight NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races in 2017 with primary sponsorship from Southeastern Mills and its Louisiana Hot Sauce brand. Snider will make his KBM debut behind the wheel of the No. 51 Louisiana Hot Sauce Tundra in the Truck Series season opener at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway Feb. 24.

The 22-year-old is also scheduled to compete at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth June 9 and Nov. 3, Kentucky Speedway in Sparta July 6, Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., Sept. 15, Las Vegas (Nev.) Motor Speedway Sept. 30, Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway Oct. 14 and Homestead-Miami (Fla.) Speedway Nov. 17.

Snider put his name on the national motorsports map in May of 2016 when he led 35 laps en route to victory in his ARCA Racing Series debut at Toledo (Ohio) Speedway. The North Carolina native collected one win, 68 laps led, three top-five and five top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 13.8 across nine ARCA starts this season. He made his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut for AM Racing at Phoenix (Ariz.) International Raceway in November where he started 19th and finished on the lead lap in the 17th spot.

“I am so thankful to Kyle, Samantha and everyone at Toyota and TRD for this fantastic opportunity,” Snider said. “The chance to race in a Toyota with KBM equipment is something I’ve worked my whole career to have the opportunity to do. I cannot wait to learn from Kyle and my teammates. I want to soak up every bit of information I can. You can’t do better than KBM in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and to have Louisiana Hot Sauce on our truck only makes it better. I’ve been blessed with great equipment and people in my career. I’m so thankful to keep that going in 2017. I’m really excited about the races we are running. We will be racing at mile-and-a-half tracks or bigger. That will provide some great opportunities for me to learn and continually improve. I look forward to doing great things with the people at KBM.”







Kyle Busch, Todd Gilliland, Myatt Snider, Harrison Burton Will Share the #51 #NASCAR


Harrison Burton, sixteen years young, will compete in six NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races behind the wheel of the No. 51 Tundra in 2017. Burton’s six-race schedule begins April 1 at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway and also includes Dover (Del.) International Speedway June 2, Iowa Speedway in Newton June 23, Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio July 19, Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway Aug. 16 and Martinsville (Va.) Speedway Oct. 28.

The NASCAR Next product competed full-time in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East in 2016, earning one pole and a seventh-place finish in the final point standings as a rookie. Burton collected three Super Late Model victories this year, including a Southern Super Series victory at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla., and also earned a third-place finish in his ARCA Racing Series debut at Iowa Speedway in Newton.

“I honestly feel like I have hit the jackpot by signing with a championship-caliber team like Kyle Busch Motorsports,” Burton said. “”Having raced in Martinsville last season with KBM, I understand the strength of the team and have complete confidence that they can provide me with great race trucks while making my transition into the Truck series as smooth as possible.”






Kevin “Bono” Manion will guide the No. 51 Tundra team with drivers Harrison Burton, Kyle Busch, Todd Gilliland and Myatt Snider. Manion guided KBM’s No. 51 team to one win, one pole, four top-five and seven-top 10 finishes with four different drivers behind the wheel last year in his first season as a Truck Series crew chief.

Prior to joining KBM, the Massachusetts native collected five victories in 10 seasons atop the pit box in NASCAR’s premier series, including two marquee wins with Jamie McMurray in 2010; the Daytona 500 and the Brickyard 400. Before graduating into NASCAR’s top division, he guided Martin Truex Jr., to back-to-back NASCAR XFINITY Series titles in 2004 and 2005. In addition to his five Monster Energy Cup Series victories, Manion boasts 15 XFINITY Series wins; 13 with Truex Jr., and two with Dale Earnhardt Jr.

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  5. Gilliland and BMR Expand Horizons For 2017
  6. Burton to Make Truck Series Debut in Fall Martinsville Race


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Roush Fenway ‘Salutes’ Mark Martin’s Hall of Fame Career

Roush Fenway ‘Salutes’ Mark Martin’s Hall of Fame Career
Roush Fenway ‘Salutes’ Mark Martin’s Hall of Fame Career
For almost two decades there was no more formidable duo in NASCAR than Mark Martin and Jack Roush. This week Roush Fenway Racing will pay tribute to Martin’s Hall of Fame career by showcasing a variety of content covering Martin’s 19 seasons with the winningest organization in NASCAR history.

Martin, who will be officially inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame on Friday night, won 83 races across NASCAR’s top three National Series and finished runner-up in the Cup Series points standings on four different occasions (1990, 1994, 1998 and 2002), while helping Roush Fenway grow into one of the premier teams in NASCAR. Team owner Jack Roush will officially induct his first NASCAR driver into the Hall during the ceremony that will air live on NBCSN – Friday at 8 p.m. ET.

“The thing that always stood out about Mark was his unmatched drive to win,” said Roush. “Mark became one of the most driven and committed people I’ve ever seen. He put us on the map in NASCAR and certainly no one deserves this honor more. I’m very pleased with the part we played in the success that Mark was able to realize throughout his career and I’ll always be grateful for his determination to succeed and desire to win.”

Throughout the course of the NASCAR Hall of Fame week, fans will be treated to a variety of behind the scenes content, including photos, videos and giveaways that highlight Martin’s almost two-decade tenure at Roush Fenway.



Fans will even have a chance to win prizes including diecast replicas, team hats and an official Mark Martin firesuit. Visit www.roushfenway.com/salutetomark for more details.


Roush Fenway ‘Salutes’ Mark Martin’s Hall of Fame Career
Roush Fenway Racing is the winningest team in NASCAR history, fielding multiple teams in NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series competition. Moving into its 30th season, Roush Fenway is a leader in driver development, having launched the careers for many of the top drivers in the sport. 

Off-track, Roush Fenway is a leader in NASCAR marketing solutions, pioneering motorsport’s first team-focused TV show and producing multiple award-winning digital and experiential marketing campaigns. Roush Fenway is co-owned by Jack Roush, the winningest team owner in NASCAR history and Fenway Sports Group, parent company of Major League Baseball’s Boston Red Sox and English Premier League’s Liverpool F.C. Visit RoushFenway.com, circle on Google+, become a fan on Facebook and Instagram and follow on Twitter at @roushfenway



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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Daniel Suárez's #NASCAR Dream Materializes

Daniel Suárez's #NASCAR Dream Materializes In his own Words

Daniel Suárez's #NASCAR Dream Materializes
NASCAR team owner Joe Gibbs, left, talks about adding NASCAR driver
Daniel Suarez, right, to his team during a press conference at Joe Gibbs Racing
on January 11, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Bob Leverone/Getty Images)

After NASCAR Veteran Carl Edwards confirmed his plans to retire immediately, his successor shares his thoughts on being named to take over the No. 19 Camry.

"This is amazing. I wasn't expecting to be in this position right now. It's been an amazing time. This is hard to believe that I'm in this position. We started all this dream 10 years ago with NASCAR, and right now to be in this position, to be in this opportunity is just something amazing for me and for everyone that has been helping me, of course.

Daniel Suárez's #NASCAR Dream Materializes
I know that it won't be easy. We have a lot to work. I have a lot to learn. But I'm sure that it couldn't happen in a better situation with Dave Rogers and the entire 19 group. It's just an amazing team. I feel like it's just a perfect place to be for a rookie like me that is really hungry to learn and to go out there and to perform well.

Really, as well, I want to thank a lot of people that helped me to get to this point. My family, of course; Coach Gibbs and the entire Joe Gibbs Racing family, for trusting me years ago, a kid from México, that barely was speaking English. Obviously my sponsors, ARRIS, Stanley, Subway, Interstate Batteries, Coca-Cola, and of course Toyota. I can't wait to drive that car, and that's sharp. That's just unbelievable. I wish I could take it to the street right now.

And as well, everyone in México. Everyone in México, they've been supporting me, not just right now, but when we started all this journey more than 10 years ago, it's been amazing, Jimmy Morales, Carlos Slim, Gustavo Arenas, the entire Sabates family, NASCAR for the amazing support through the Drive 4 Diversity program. It's been an amazing journey, and I can't wait for the future. Thank you very much, everyone."


Daniel Suárez's #NASCAR Dream Materializes
Daniel Suarez, driver of the #19 Interstate Batteries Toyota, celebrates in Victory
Lane after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Drive Sober 200 at Dover
International Speedway on October 2, 2016 in Dover, Delaware.
(Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Image)

 

By The Numbers - Daniel Suárez's NASCAR National Series Career

First NASCAR national series start was at Richmond International Raceway on April 25, 2014 driving for car owner Joe Gibbs in the NASCAR XFINITY Series. Suárez started the race 12th and finished 19th in his NASCAR national series debut.

  • 1 – Number of NASCAR XFINITY Series championships (2016)
  • 1 – Number of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series wins
  • 3 – Number of NASCAR XFINITY Series wins – all last season
  • 6 – Number of NASCAR XFINITY Series career Coors Light poles
  • 10 – Number of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career top-five finishes
  • 25 – Number of years old; Suárez is 25 years, 0 months and 4 days old on January 11, 2017
  • 27 – Number of NASCAR XFINITY Series career top-five finishes
  • 27 – Number of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career starts
  • 45 – Number of NASCAR XFINITY Series career top-10 finishes
  • 68 – Number of NASCAR XFINITY Series career starts
  • 95 – Number of NASCAR national series career starts
  • 263 – Number of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career laps led
  • 430 – Number of NASCAR XFINITY Series career laps led
  • 4,255 – Number of NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career laps completed
  • 11,868 – Number of NASCAR XFINITY Series career laps completed


Additional Career Highlights

  • • Daniel Suárez won his first NASCAR XFINITY Series championship in 2016; becoming the 27th different driver to win the title.
  • • Daniel Suárez is the first Latin American driver to win a NASCAR national series championship.
  • • Suárez won the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway to claim the 2016 series title in the inaugural NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase.
  • • Suárez made 33 starts this season, posting three wins, 19 top fives and 27 top 10s and three Coors Light poles during his championship season.
  • • Suárez has become the first graduate of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity program to win a NASCAR XFINITY Series championship.

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