Earles, Scott, Robertson To Be Inducted Into NMPA Hall Of Fame On Saturday
Martinsville, VA---H. Clay Earles, Wendell Scott and T. Wayne Robertson will be inducted into the National Motorsports Press Association's Hall of Fame Saturday night in Darlington. It's fitting that the three are inducted together. Earles was dedicated to creating wonderful memories for the fans and providing the best facility for watching a race. Scott was dedicated to being a great driver and mechanic. Robertson was dedicated to promoting the sport of Winston Cup racing. Martinsville Speedway President W. Clay Campbell, who is H. Clay Earles' grandson, knew Robertson well and came to know Scott as he grew up at the race track and traveled with his grandfather promoting races. "I think Wendell and my grandfather had a lot in common. Both of them went up against the odds and both of them persevered and made it. We are in the position we are today because of perseverance," Campbell said. "T. Wayne, Wendell and my grandfather were all determined to succeed and racing is a better sport because they were a part of it." Frank Scott, son of Wendell Scott agreed. "I think it's proper that Mr. Earles and my father be enshrined at the same time, because both of them are from Virginia and both have been such a vital part of automobile racing," Scott said. Earles, one of the pioneers of racing, opened Martinsville in 1947, the year before NASCAR was formed, and became partners at Martinsville with the late Big Bill France, who founded NASCAR. The track began with a seating capacity of 750 and now seats 86,000. Martinsville was one of the first tracks to have permanent concession stands, attended restrooms, first-aid stations and air-conditioned scoring stands and press boxes. Earles, active in the track until the end, died November 16, 1999. "My grandfather would have especially appreciated being voted into the NMPA Hall of Fame," Campbell said. "He loved the media and knew how important they are to the success of the sport." Scott, who died in 1990, began racing at the Danville Fairgrounds Speedway winning 128 races in many divisions and in 1959 won the Virginia State Sportsman Championship. In 1961, he fielded a car in NASCAR's Grand National circuit, later renamed the Winston Cup Series. On December 1, 1963 he won his only Grand National race, a 100-mile event on a half-mile track in Jacksonville, Florida. He is the only African-American driver to ever win a Winston Cup race. "I can speak for myself and my family," said Frank Scott. "We are happy he is being recognized and his legacy continues. It's nice for someone to realize and appreciate the effort he made during his career." Much of NASCAR stock car racing's current popularity can be traced to Robertson. Robertson moved up the ranks to become president of Sports Marketing Enterprises. Many of racing's unique programs, such as the Winston Million and the No Bull Five, were Robertson's innovations. After his death in a boating accident in 1998, the Winston Cup Preview, which he created, was quite appropriately re-named the T. Wayne Robertson Winston Cup Preview in his honor. Martinsville Speedway will host two consecutive weekends of racing with the Taco Bell 300 NASCAR Late Model Stock race on Sunday, September 24, the Goody's Body Pain 200 Featherlite Modified Series race on Saturday, September 30 and the NAPA AutoCare 500 Winston Cup race on Sunday, October 1. Great seats are available for all of the events by calling toll free at 877-722-3849.