Five of six nominees for Racing Promotion Monthly’s Auto Racing Promoter of the Year are multi-time nominees. The nominees’ experience ranges from one season to over 30 years and among them are promoters of four paved, and two dirt ovals. Three are affiliated with NASCAR, one with IMCA, one with USRA.
The nominees are: Region One, Eastern Region: Josh Vanada, Thompson (CT) Speedway Motorsports Park; Region Two, Southeastern Region: Tim & Pat Bryant, Five Flags (FL) Speedway; Region Three, Central Region: Gary & Donna Howe, Kalamazoo (MI) Speedway; Region Four, Northern Region: Dan and Scott Ratajczak, and Toby Kruse, 141 (WI) Speedway; Region Five, Great Plains Region: Dan Robinson, Lucas Oil (MO) Speedway; Region Six, Southwest and Western Region: Doug & Traci Hobbs, Evergreen (WA) Speedway. Vanada received his first nomination, the Ratajczaks and Kruse, their second, Robinson, his fourth, and The Hobbs, their third. Kruse was nominated previously for his operation at Marshalltown (IA) Speedway.
Gray Garrison and the Hawkins Family, Bowman Gray (NC) Stadium received the award last year. Previous winners are: Hugh Deery, 1976/1984; J.C. Agajanian, 1977; D. Anthony Venditti, 1978; Jack Gunn, 1979; George Eisenhart, 1980; Dick O’Brien, 1981; Howard Tiedt, 1982; Don Martin, 1983; Glenn Donnelly, 1985; Cary Agajanian, 1986; Bud Lunsford, 1987; Bob Daniels, 1988; Howard Commander, 1989; Ray Wilkings, 1990; Paul Kuhl, 1991; Robert Lawton; 1992; Earl Baltes, 1993; Jody Deery, 1994; Andy Vertrees, 1995; Charles Powell, 1996; C-Ray Hall, 1997; Larry Kemp, 1998; Charles Cathell, 1999; Charles Deery, 2000; Ralph Capitani, 2001; Lanny Edwards, 2002; Bob & Nadine Strauss, 2003; Tom Curley, 2004, Steve York, 2005; John Padjen, 2006; Lynn Phillips, 2007; Joe & Walt Doellefeld, 2008; the Nuckles family, 2009; the Queensland family, Deer Creek (MN) Speedway, 2010; and Robert Sargent, Track Enterprises, Macon (IL), Paducah (KY) Speedways, 2011; Ron Drager and Scott Schultz, Flat Rock (MI) and Toledo (OH) Speedways, 2012; Roger Hadan, Eagle (NE) Raceway, 2013, and Gary & Donna Howe, Kalamazoo Speedway, 2014.
The Auto Racing Promoter of the Year is short track racing’s most prestigious award. It is awarded each year after voting by promoters. The award was originated in 1976 by the editor of Racing Promotion Monthly. Voting is conducted in two phases: a preliminary ballot in the newsletter nominates candidates in six regions. The six candidates become Regional Promoters of the Year and then appear on a second ballot for final voting. It is the only national award recognizing promotional excellence selected by peers. The award is for the 27th year sponsored by Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The Auto Racing Promoter of the Year ballot will soon reach readers of Racing Promotion Monthly via the U.S. Postal Service. The Forty-First Auto Racing Promoter of the Year will be revealed during the 44th Annual RPM@Daytona Workshop at the Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort, Daytona Beach, FL, February 20, 2017.
Racing Promotion Monthly, the idea newsletter for auto racing promoters, and the Workshops, are produced with the year-round support of K&K Insurance Group, Inc., Hoosier Racing Tire. The RPM Promoters Workshops are produced with additional support from: INEX, Chevrolet Performance, Moffett Productions, Raceceiver, Lucas Oil, Simes Graphic Designs, Advertising Edge, Sunoco Race Fuels, Firethorn Marketing, IMCA, FuelTix, and MyRacePass. The Speedweek Workshop is the 114th produced by Racing Promotion Monthly since 1974. More than 900 track operators, their employees, and industry leaders attended last year’s Workshops. More information is available from RacingPromotionMonthly.Com or by phone at 715-536-1067.