(Special to Bob Baker)
(Cover Image by John Mahoney)
Each year the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum pays homage to a former champion. For 2019, their “Salute to Champion” program recognizes racing legend, A.J. Foyt. A comprehensive display is planned for the Houston, Texas native.
“We’re extremely humbled to honor AJ Foyt with this year’s ‘Salute to Champion’,” said Museum Coordinator, Bill Wright. “Many of us idolized A.J. as young race fans. To list all of his accomplishments in racing would be almost impossible. We hope that our tribute will both bring back great memories for his fans, but also educate our younger race fans about how awesome his exploits and persona was on and off the track.
The display will include seven of Foyt’s legendary rides. Three of Foyt’s Indy 500 wins as well as his rookie car at Indianapolis will be represented.
The cars scheduled for display include the following:
– 1957 Dean Van Lines Monza winner (driven by Jimmy Bryan, and A.J.’s Indy Rookie car in 1958)
– 1961 Bowes Seal Fast Trevis Roadster Indy 500 winner
– 1967 Sheraton Thompson Coyote Indy 500 winner
– 1974 Steve Stapp Sprint Car that A.J. drove to twin 50-lap feature wins at the Indiana State Fairgrounds
– Famous 1974-76 Dirt Champ #14 car
– 1977 Gilmore Coyote Indy 500 winner back-up car
– Bob Nowicke Midget that won the 1961 “Hut Hundred” at Terre Haute
“We’re really excited to be able to tell A.J.’s story,” Wright continued. “As has been the case in the past, we’ll have interactive exhibits as well as video to salute our champion. Our members and race fans are always a big part of our exhibits, and if anyone has anything in mind to loan, we’re always open to that. In addition, we’re getting close to announcing our first ‘Members Only’ die-cast in several years. A hint is that it will be associated with A.J. Foyt, so stay tuned!”
For more information on the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame & Museum, please visit www.SprintCarHoF.com.