Champions Week, day four report

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champions Week -- Day 4 2008 Season's Top Performers Honored At Annual Media Luncheon Former Track Owner Bob Bahre Receives Top Industry Award For Racing Contributions DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Dec. 4, 2008) -- The top ...

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champions Week -- Day 4

2008 Season's Top Performers Honored At Annual Media Luncheon
Former Track Owner Bob Bahre Receives Top Industry Award For Racing Contributions

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Dec. 4, 2008) -- The top performers from the recently completed 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season were honored Thursday at the annual NASCAR NMPA Myers Brothers Media Luncheon at Cipriani in New York City.

Bob Bahre, long a champion promoter and supporter of stock-car racing in the New England region, collected one of NASCAR's most prestigious and longest-running awards, as the former owner of New Hampshire Motor Speedway, received the Buddy Shuman Award. Presented since 1957, the award annually recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to NASCAR racing.

"We might have built the thing, but it's been the fans and drivers who have made it what it is today," Bahre said.

Longtime NASCAR photographer Thomas Taylor Warren, affectionately known to the motorsports community as "T. Taylor," is the recipient of the National Motorsports Press Association's Myers Brothers Award for 2008. Warren was recognized for a lifetime achievement in NASCAR photography. Accepting on behalf of Warren, who died on Oct. 8 at the age of 83, was NASCAR Vice President of Corporate Communications, Jim Hunter.

"T. Taylor was a true pioneer in NASCAR photography," Hunter said. "He may no longer be with us, but his photographs will live forever."

Team owner Richard Childress was the recipient of the NASCAR Home Depot Humanitarian Award. Childress recently helped fund the establishment of the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma at Wake Forest University's Baptist Medical Center.

"This is an important cause that we really believe in," Childress said. "More than 12,000 children die each year from traumatic accidents. We're committed to do all we can to help make life better for some of these children."

For the sixth straight year, Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the Chex Cereals Most Popular Driver Award. More than 1.2 million fan votes were cast for Earnhardt Jr.

"It's a great honor to be chosen by the fans once again," Earnhardt Jr. said. "NASCAR fans are the best in all of sports and we're fortunate to have a large group of fans that have been extremely loyal to us over the years."

Three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson picked up five awards and his No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team received three other awards.

"Today was an opportunity to reflect back on all of the hard work and effort put in by everyone at the race shop," Johnson said. "The emotions kind of go over the top when you take a moment and realize just how special each of these individuals have been in sharing in the success we've had the past three seasons."

Here is the complete list of Thursday's award winners:

* Buddy Shuman Award -- Bob Bahre
* NASCAR Home Depot Humanitarian Award -- Richard Childress
* NMPA Myers Brothers Award -- Thomas Taylor Warren
* Chex Cereals Most Popular Driver Award -- Dale Earnhardt Jr.
* Raybestos Rookie of the Year Award -- Regan Smith
* DirecTV Crew Chief of the Year Award -- Steve Addington
* Dow Automotive Strategic Call of the Race Award -- Carl Edwards
* Moog Chassis Parts Problem Solver of the Year Award -- Bob Osborne
* MAHLE Clevite Engine Builder of the Year Award -- Hendrick Motorsports
* Mechanix Wear Most Valuable Pit Award -- No. 48 team
* Mobil 1 Command Performance Award -- Ryan Newman
* USG Improving the Finish Award -- Jeff Burton
* Goodyear Gatorback Fastest Lap Award -- Jimmie Johnson
* WIX Filters Lap Leader Award -- Jimmie Johnson
* Coors Light Pole Award -- Jimmie Johnson
* Sunoco Diamond Performance Award -- Jimmie Johnson
* Goodyear Award -- Jimmie Johnson
* Championship Sponsor Award -- Lowe's
* Champion Crew Chief Award -- Chad Knaus

2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Driver Champion: Jimmie Johnson

2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Owner Champion: Rick Hendrick and Jeff Gordon of Hendrick Motorsports

Final NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Top 12: 1. Jimmie Johnson, 6,684; 2. Carl Edwards, 6,615; 3. Greg Biffle, 6,467; 4. Kevin Harvick, 6,408; 5. Clint Bowyer, 6,381; 6. Jeff Burton, 6,335; 7. Jeff Gordon, 6,316; 8. Denny Hamlin, 6,214; 9. Tony Stewart, 6,202; 10. Kyle Busch, 6,186; 11. Matt Kenseth, 6,184 and Dale Earnhardt Jr., 6,127.

Raybestos Rookie of the Year: Regan Smith

-credit: nascar

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Jeff Burton , Jeff Gordon , Tony Stewart , Kevin Harvick , Greg Biffle , Ryan Newman , Jimmie Johnson , Carl Edwards , Regan Smith , Chad Knaus , Jim Hunter , Kyle Busch
Teams Hendrick Motorsports