NCMA 2011 Motorsports Industry Awards news 2011-01-12

NCMA and Senn Dunn Insurance Gear up for 5th Annual Motorsports Industry Awards

Tom Higgins; Jimmy Spencer; Ned Jarrett; Steve Waid; Humpy Wheeler to Pay Tribute to Junior Johnson

The North Carolina Motorsports Association ("NCMA") is gearing up for the 5th Annual North Carolina Motorsports Industry Awards presented by Senn Dunn Insurance. On Friday, January 21st, industry business leaders will gather to honor racing legend Junior Johnson and award seven companies for their 2010 accomplishments. In addition, a first ever Media Recognition Award will go to Chris Economaki recognized as "The Dean of American Motorsports". The event is in its 5th year and will once again be held at the Embassy Suites in Concord, NC, beginning with a cocktail reception hosted by Dixon Hughes PLLC. An unscripted fire side chat will be moderated by Tom Higgins as Jimmy Spencer, Ned Jarrett, Steve Waid and Humpy Wheeler take the stage to discuss this year's Achievement in Motorsports Tribute recipient, Junior Johnson.

Senn Dunn Insurance has announced that they will return as the presenting sponsor for the second consecutive year. Senn Dunn Insurance, through its Motorsports Practice Group, has established long-term clients and a well respected name within the racing industry handling risk management, employee benefits and other insurance needs. Their motto is, "We'll handle it" and that is exactly what they will be doing the night of the event when they help present the Achievement in Motorsports Tribute award.

Born June 28, 1931 in Wilkes County, North Carolina, Junior Johnson is one of the early superstars of NASCAR. He grew up on a farm and, like many of the pioneers of stock car racing, developed his driving skills running moonshine as a young man. He consistently outran and outwitted local police and federal agents in auto chases, and he was never caught while delivering moonshine to customers. Johnson became something of a legend in the rural South, where his driving expertise and "outlaw" image was much admired. His professional NASCAR career as a driver and then owner was something to be admired as well. He won 50 NASCAR races in his career before retiring from driving in 1966. In the 1970s and 1980s he became a NASCAR racing team owner, where he sponsored such NASCAR champions as Cale Yarborough and Darrell Waltrip winning a 132 races and six championships.

Johnson is credited with pioneering many racing technologies and driving styles including the discovery of drafting. Nicknamed "The Last American Hero", Johnson was an inaugural inductee into the NASCAR Hall of Fame and named one of NASCAR's "50 Greatest Drivers." Junior Johnson's contributions to motorsports are immeasurable. He now produces a line of fried pork skins and country ham and recently launched a race team he hopes will propel his 17-year-old son, Robert Johnson to an eventual NASCAR Career.

"The banquet is a great night of fun, seeing old friends and most of all showcasing the depth of our industry," said Greg Fornelli, NCMA Chairman Elect and president of Stock Car Steel & Aluminum, Inc. "The Motorsports industry is made up of many small, medium and large businesses that provide jobs, education and economic impact. There are many racing banquets to recognize great drivers and team achievements, but this event is the industry's night to be recognized. In addition, I can't think of a better presenting partner than Senn Dunn Insurance. In my own business they have saved us money and provided huge administrative support and employee education."

2011 Motorsports Industry Awards are as follows:

* WSSU Motorsports Management Program presented by Bank of America, N.A.

* North Wilkesboro Speedway presented by Greer & Walker, LLP

* NASCAR Media Group presented by Jostens

* Essex Parts Services presented by Performance Racing Industry (PRI)

* US Legend Cars International presented by Stock Car Steel & Aluminum, Inc

* Goodridge USA presented by SunTrust Banks, Inc.

* Piedmont Racing Expo presented by Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

About the NCMA: The North Carolina Motorsports Association (NCMA) is a non-profit trade association representing the $6 billion motorsports economy in the state of North Carolina. Supported by membership the NCMA is an advocate on a local, state, and national level for the interests of the motorsports industry. The NCMA conducts networking events; workforce development initiatives; youth outreach and education programs. The NCMA is relied upon as a clearinghouse for motorsports industry resources and information. The NCMA maintains an office at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina, working statewide with all forms of competitive motorsports.

-source: ncma

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Series General
Drivers Darrell Waltrip , Jimmy Spencer , Ned Jarrett , Junior Johnson , Cale Yarborough