FORT WORTH-DALLAS (June 7, 2000) -- Many races have a trophy with a tradition. Winners of the Indianapolis 500 have their face immortalized in the Borg-Warner Trophy. Winners of the June Indy Racing Northern Light Series race at Texas Motor ...
FORT WORTH-DALLAS (June 7, 2000) -- Many races have a trophy with a tradition. Winners of the Indianapolis 500 have their face immortalized in the Borg-Warner Trophy. Winners of the June Indy Racing Northern Light Series race at Texas Motor Speedway will now take home the Foyt-Rutherford Trophy.
This year's Casino Magic 500 will mark the beginning of a new tradition. The new trophy will become the signature award for the June Indy car event. The hand-cut imported crystal trophy, which stands 20 inches tall, will first be presented in Victory Lane at Texas Motor Speedway the night of June 10.
The name was chosen from more than 400 entries from fans through a contest on the speedway's website. After combing through all the suggestions, it was decided that Foyt-Rutherford was the most fitting. Dick Elpers of Plano, Texas was one of several entries suggesting the combination of Foyt and Rutherford for the award. Elpers name was randomly drawn from the entries suggesting the combination of the Texas racing legends. For winning the contest, he and his son Derek, 13, will be watching the Saturday night Casino Magic 500 from the suite of speedway general manager Eddie Gossage. He and Derek will also be in Victory Lane for the first presentation of the trophy.
"We received so many creative entries, it was sort of tough to decide," said Gossage. "Many had suggested Foyt or Rutherford, but we liked the combination of the two. Certainly, there are many Texans who have contributed to the sport of open wheel racing, but I don't think anyone will argue that these two probably stand out as having done the most." Elpers was elated to hear he had won the contest.
"I was very surprised to get the message on my answering machine," said Elpers. "I knew my wife would be even more surprised so I didn't tell her and just left it as a saved message. She was sitting there with her mouth open when she played it back."
"I've been a race fan for many years. When I read about the contest in the speedway newsletter, I immediately thought of Foyt and Rutherford. It took me about three whole seconds to decide on the name - there was no other choice in my mind. It was just a natural."
Gossage called Foyt and Rutherford to relay the good news.
"I spoke with Johnny and he was very honored by this," said Gossage. "I haven't been able to reach A.J. yet but I'm sure he'll be just as surprised."
The two Texas racing legends will be honored during the upcoming Casino Magic 500 race week activities.