Dearborn, Mich. -- Ned Jarrett was honored last night (June 13) with the Spirit of Ford Award as part of the Ford Centennial Celebration in Dearborn, Mich. "This is a total surprise," said Ned Jarrett. "When they told me a...
Dearborn, Mich. -- Ned Jarrett was honored last night (June 13) with the Spirit of Ford Award as part of the Ford Centennial Celebration in Dearborn, Mich.
"This is a total surprise," said Ned Jarrett. "When they told me a couple of years ago that I had won more races in a Ford than anybody else, I was extremely proud. We ran a lot more races back then, but I've always valued my relationship with Ford and I'm honored to receive this award during such a special time in Ford's history."
The Spirit of Ford Award is the highest honor in Ford Racing and goes to a person who has made significant contributions on and off the track to the sport of auto racing. Edsel Ford, along with Dale and Jason Jarrett, presented Ned Jarrett with the award during a reception at the Henry Ford Museum.
"I think Edsel Ford summed up my feelings in his remarks when he said that my dad is my hero. He's done so much for this sport and for Ford to honor him in this way is something our family will always remember," said Dale Jarrett. "What made the evening even more special is that Jason was there as well, so it's one of those memories that the Jarrett family will treasure for years to come."
Ned Jarrett won the NASCAR Winston Cup championship in 1961 and 1965 and remains the all-time leader in Ford wins with 43.
Other stock car recipients of the Spirit of Ford Award include:
Bud Moore, the Wood Brothers, Junie Donlavey, Bill Elliott, Richard Petty and the France family.