Manufacturers, Sanctioning Bodies,Race Promoters, Track Owners: Send us your latest news w/ photos! Email: Robert.Fisher@sorc.com.
Historic HANS Donated To Museum of American Speed
Former Le Mans 24-hour winner Jim Downing has donated one of his original Model I HANS Devices to the Museum of American Speed. The Model I symbolizes years of struggle by five-time IMSA champion Downing to gain acceptance for the patented HANS Device. When Downing’s Kudzu-Mazda team won the LMP2 class at Le Mans in 1996, he was the only driver at the great French race wearing a head-and-neck restraint.
This year, virtually every driver at Le Mans will be wearing a HANS Device and a Model I device, last worn by Downing at Le Mans in 2002, is being recognized by one of the world’s foremost collections of speed equipment. The Museum of American Speed, located in Lincoln, Nebraska, was founded by famed aftermarket equipment dealer “Speedy” Bill Smith, founder and owner of Speedway Motors.
“I’ve been in dozens of racing museums around the world and Speedy Bill’s place is one of the finest I’ve ever seen,” said Downing. “Everything is first class—from the speed equipment and cars to the detailed explanations of the historical value of the exhibits and the facility itself. I’m proud to donate one of my Model I HANS Devices to the museum’s collection of safety equipment.”
I-25 Speedway Under New Ownership
ASA Sanctioned I-25 Speedway, the over-sized quarter-mile, high-banked paved oval racetrack, located along the front range of the Rocky Mountains has been under new management since early April. Pueblo, Colorado, resident, Chris Cullen has taken control from White Brothers Motorsports and confirmed that the track will continue its long-term partnership as an ASA Member Track.
I-25 Speedway anchored itself in auto racing many decades ago as one of the formative short tracks in the country. The speedway has evolved, and the tradition continues with fast 325-foot straightaways and high-banked turns, capable of blistering speeds. The wide, smooth surface and progressive banking provide the most exciting door-to-door competition around. The facility is full-service with state-of-the-art lighting, paved handicap access, souvenirs, and family entertainment.
“I-25 Speedway is an amazing track to race on and to watch exciting racing, the best around,” said owner Chris Cullen. “It’s about the racing and our goal is to focus on the racing and the fan experience on the track, we’re going to make it the best it can be.”
Auto Meter and Promus Equity Partners of Chicago Enter Into New Partnership
Promus Equity Partners, LLC (“Promus”) and Auto Meter management are pleased to announce the acquisition of Auto Meter Products, Inc.
Auto Meter’s market share in the dynamic automotive and racing market segments have been growing rapidly as automotive technicians and national retailers have increasingly turned to Auto Meter equipment to help them improve customer satisfaction, increase sales, and reduce costs.
Jeff King, Auto Meter’s President and CEO, said, “We are a technology driven company and pride ourselves on providing first-to-market solutions for a diverse group of automotive enthusiasts, professional and sportsman racers, and automotive service professionals. Our leading technology resonates with our customers and has helped to build very strong loyalty around our market leading brands including: Auto Meter, Stack, Spek-Pro, Dedenbear, and Battery Extender. We are thrilled to partner with Promus as we continue to build our company and bring even more exciting technology to our customers.”
Steve Brown, a partner at Promus said, “The combination of strong engineering capabilities, leading brand names, deep and diverse customer relationships, and a world class lean manufacturing operation makes Auto Meter a very attractive business. Jeff has built a verytalented team that operates at the forefront of their industry. We look forward to partnering with this team to grow the company both organically and through strategic acquisitions.”
Grundy County Speedway Joins ASA Member Track Family
On the heels of making some significant renewals with its member tracks, ASA announced the addition of a new venue, Grundy County Speedway. The 1/3-mile high-banked paved oval in Morris, Illinois, wasbuilt by the Grundy County Agricultural District fair in 1971, which had its start as a horse track in Mazon, Illinois, in 1906. Over the years, many sanctioning groups and short track stars raced and won on the historic semi-banked track. The track, which first opened in 1926 as a half-mile dirt track has been under the leadership of Burdette Carter ever since Board President and Promoter Frank Welch passed away in 2009. Carter, Board Secretary, is also the long-time operator of the Grundy County Fair held over the July 4th weekend. Grundy County Speedway runs Late Models, Mid-American Sportsman, Street Stocks, and 4-Cylinders every Friday night.
“It is always exciting to add a new track to the ASA Member Track family,” said Dennis Huth, president of ASA. “But in this case it truly is special to be adding Grundy County Speedway, a track with so much history and a track that has hosted so many events and great names over the years.”
“The Grundy County Board looked long and hard at the ASA Member Track Program, and thanks to Ron and Dennis they were able to answer our questions and provide what we needed,” said Burdette Carter. “We look forward to the rest of the season under the ASA banner and giving our racers a chance to run against other tracks in the ASA Member Track family.”