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38th Anniversary
Auto Racing All-America Team Banquet presented by A1GP
Hyatt Regency Indianapolis
January 12, 2008

Honoring

The 2007 Auto Racing All-America Team
And AARWBA's Driver of the Year, Dario Franchitti, Winner of the Jerry Titus Memorial Trophy™

AARWBA Titus Trophy to Franchitti

Dan R. Boyd photo. Right-click for high-resolution download.
Dario Franchitti with AARWBA's highest honor, the Jerry Titus Memorial Trophy. Dan R. Boyd photo.


Watch the Banquet Videos on 1320TV.com

Indy 500 Winner Tops All-America Team Vote;
Drivers Honored by Media Group;
Haas Named Pioneer; Fittipaldi Featured Speaker

INDIANAPOLIS – Dario Franchitti, who won the Indianapolis 500 and IndyCar Series championship and then moved on to NASCAR, was announced as recipient of the Jerry Titus Memorial Trophy for 2007 at Saturday night’s 38th annual American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association’s All-America Team ceremony, presented by A1GP World Cup of Motorsport.

The Titus is earned by the driver who receives the most All-America Team votes cast by AARWBA members. Named in memory of the late journalist and professional racer, it is the highest honor offered by the country’s oldest and largest organization of motorsports media professionals.

Dan R. Boyd photo. Right-click for high-resolution download.
All-America Team group photo: (Top row, left-to-right): Tony Schumacher, Dario Franchitti, Featured Speaker Emerson Fittipaldi, Jaime Melo, Alex Lloyd, Jon Fogarty. (Bottom row): Scott Pruett, Tony Pedregon, Carl Haas, Dane Cameron, Mika Salo, Frank Kimmel. Dan R. Boyd photo.

Emerson Fittipaldi, the legendary Indy-Formula One-Champ Car champion, was the featured speaker. Approximately 200 members, guests and VIPs were in attendance at the Hyatt Regency ballroom in downtown Indianapolis. AARWBA members annually elect drivers to the Team from seven categories: Stock car, open-wheel, drag racing, road racing, short track, touring series and at-large.

“It makes me very proud to receive the Titus Award,” said Franchitti, who accepted from AARWBA President Dusty Brandel. “2007 was a wonderful season for me, and awards like this will help to remind me of what I was able to achieve with my team. Thanks to all my friends who voted for me in the media.”

Other Team drivers on-hand to claim their “Horsepower” Trophies were: Tony Schumacher and Tony Pedregon (drag racing); Alex Gurney, Jon Fogarty and Scott Pruett (road racing); Mika Salo, Jamie Melo and Alex Lloyd (at-large); and Frank Kimmel (touring series). Also elected were Sebastien Bourdais (open wheel); Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon (stock car); Donny Schatz and Jerry Coons Jr. (short track); and Ron Hornaday Jr. (touring).

Several special awards were presented:

Dan R. Boyd photo. Right-click for high-resolution download.
Carl Haas proudly displays his Pioneer In Racing Award. Dan R. Boyd photo.

Pioneer In Racing Award: Carl A. Haas, one of motorsports’ most successful team owners and entrepreneurs, was honored for longtime dedication and achievement that have made a difference in the sport. The Pioneer is one of AARWBA’s oldest and most prestigious awards and is not given every year. Dinner Chairman Michael Knight made the introduction and presentation.

Dan R. Boyd photo. Right-click for high-resolution download.
Dave Densmore (center) happily accepts the Jim Chapman Award from Michael Knight (left) and Paul Page. Dan R. Boyd photo.

Jim Chapman Award: Dave Densmore and Bob Carlson received the honor for excellence in motorsports public relations. It is named in memory of Chapman, the late legendary PR executive, who was Babe Ruth’s PR rep and director of racing for CART series sponsor PPG Industries. Densmore, who has represented John Force and his sponsors for many years, and Carlson, the veteran Porsche Cars North America publicist, were chosen by a blue-ribbon committee of journalists, all of whom knew Chapman. It’s the first time two people have been honored in the same year. The plaques were presented by Knight, Mike Harris and Paul Page, all close friends of Chapman.

Dusty Brandel President’s Award: Robert (Rocky) Entriken, journalist and longtime chairman of the All-America Team selection committee, received the honor from Brandel. Entriken was acknowledged for his many contributions to the organization.

Gorsline Scholarship: The 15th annual scholarship, given by John Gorsline of The Gorsline Co., went to 19-year-old Star Mazda series champion Dane Cameron. The prize is awarded to an up-and-coming driver who displays the attributes of a future champion. Cameron became the first rookie to win the overall series championship. Vicki O’Connor, managing director of the Champ Car Atlantic series, made the presentation on behalf of John Gorsline.

A1GP Chief Commercial Officer Scott Hollingsworth greeted guests on behalf of the evening’s new presenting sponsor. The international, 10-race, A1GP open-wheel series matches driver vs. driver, country vs. country. A1GP brings together 22 nations to compete on an equal basis.

A special audio-visual tribute was offered in memory of members Bill France Jr., Wally Parks and Shav Glick. Several speakers participated in the new Shav Glick Newsmakers Forum, where Franchitti received his Indy 500 winner’s ring from IMS President Joie Chitwood and Dario’s image on the Borg-Warner Trophy was unveiled. The pre-dinner reception was co-hosted by ESPN, MAZDASPEED, Budweiser and Edelman Motorsports.

Popular announcer Bob Jenkins was Master of Ceremonies. Army Staff Sergeant John Adams and Indianapolis 500 Oldtimers Club executive director Jack Martin led the Pledge of Allegiance.

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NOTE TO NEWS MEDIA: Visit AARWBA.org for more information. Contact President Dusty Brandel, 818/842-7005, aarwba@compuserve.com or dinner chairman Michael Knight, 602/315-3900 (cell phone) or SpinDoctor500@aol.com . Thank you.

Special Honors
Carl Haas, Pioneer in Racing - A significant contributor to the sport

CARL HAAS TO RECEIVE PIONEER IN RACING AWARD FROM AARWBA

38th All-America Team Dinner Set for Jan. 12 in Indy

Carl Haas - Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing photo
Carl Haas
INDIANAPOLIS -- Carl A. Haas, one of the most successful team owners and businessmen in motorsports history, has been chosen by the American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association to receive its Pioneer In Racing Award. Haas will accept at the 38th All-America Team dinner, Saturday, January 12, at the Indianapolis Hyatt.

The Pioneer is one of the most prestigious honors from AARWBA, the country’s oldest and largest organization of motorsports media professionals. The award recognizes long-time dedication and achievement that have made a difference in the sport. Dan Gurney, Parnelli Jones, Andy Granatelli, Kenny Bernstein, the Agajanian family, Les Richter, Hershel McGriff and Robert Falcon are among the previous recipients.

While Haas spent his early years winning races behind the wheel of various sports cars, he attained legendary status as a team owner, with 15 major championships. His All-Star roster of drivers has included Mario, Michael and John Andretti, Nigel Mansell, Jackie Stewart, Paul Tracy, Cristiano da Matta, Alan Jones, Brian Redman, Jackie Ickx, Peter Revson, David Hobbs, Patrick Tambay, Masten Gregory, Chuck Parsons and Skip Scott. This season, Sebastien Bourdais and Graham Rahal drive for him in the Champ Car series. Haas entries, co-owned by Paul Newman, have won seven CART/Champ Car titles, including the last three. Haas teams also won three SCCA Formula 5000 championships, four in Can-Am, and another in Super Vee. He’s also campaigned cars in Formula One and the NASCAR Nextel Cup and Busch Series. Haas, along with Champ Car partners Newman and Michael Lanigan, recently announced a new partnership with Robert Yates Racing for NASCAR competition.

As a racing entrepreneur, Haas also has set a standard. His major sponsors have included blue-chip companies such as McDonald’s, Budweiser, Kmart, Havoline, Beatrice and Citicorp. He’s excelled as a racing car and parts importer and distributor. On an executive level, he’s a former SCCA chairman, CART and Road America director, and promoter at Milwaukee and Houston. Haas has been inducted into the SCCA Hall of Fame.

"I'm honored to be recognized by AARWBA as a Pioneer In Racing,” said Haas. “They have had the opportunity to cover the sport and have come to know many people who have made an impact on auto racing both on track and off. I am proud that they feel I have made a contribution. My enthusiasm for racing grew from the first time I was exposed to it as a driver and I have enjoyed being involved as a competitor, team owner, advisor, promoter, and racing car and parts importer and distributor. It was never a job; it has always been a passion."

The All-America Team ceremony will honor 2007’s top drivers from all forms of motorsports. Categories include stock cars, open-wheel, drag racing, road racing, short track, touring series and at-large categories. It is one of the few such dinners open to the public.

Information on individual tickets, tables of 10, and souvenir program book advertising is available at the www.aarwba.org website or from President Dusty Brandel, 818-842-7005, dusty@aarwba.org.

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To advertise in the event program please use this form which you may print from virus-free PDF format.

The 38th Anniversary Auto Racing All-America Banquet, will be held on January 12, 2008 at the Hyatt Regency Indianapolis. Members of the racing news media meet to honor the drivers cited for their efforts during the 2007 racing season. It's one of the few banquets in the racing industry that's open to the public.

See Highlights of the 2007 Banquet
See Highlights of the second 2005 Banquet
See Highlights of the first 2005 Banquet
See Highlights of the 2004 Banquet
See Highlights of the 2003 Banquet
See Highlights of the 2002 Banquet
See Highlights of the 2001 Banquet
See Highlights of the 2000 Banquet

For more information on the banquet or AARWBA, Write to AARWBA or send U.S. Mail to:


American Auto Racing Writers & Broadcasters Association
922 North Pass Avenue
Burbank, CA 91505
U.S.A.
Telephone (818) 842-7005
Facsimile (818) 842-7020

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