SEMA eNews Vol. 10, No. 23, June 7, 2007

NASCAR CHAIRMAN BILL FRANCE JR. PASSES AWAY

The passing of Bill France Jr. this week elicited an outpouring of tribute among motorsports fans, professionals, writers and those in the specialty-equipment industry.

“From the beginning as a hobby, then a sport and now a huge business, Bill France Jr. respected the people who stuck with NASCAR throughout the growth years,” says Comp Performance Group owner - Head of Production & Engineering and SEMA Board of Directors member Scooter Brothers. “He would not always tell you what you wanted to hear and you did not always like his answers, but you had a level of respect for him that you stuck to his decisions and made them work.

“I believe he was single-handedly responsible for the huge growth in popularity of NASCAR. He saw the benefit of making heroes out of drivers, and that one thing resulted in the sport expanding to a market much larger than ever hoped for. He was truly a visionary who will be sorely missed. It will be many years before we realize just how profound his presence was in the growth of racing in this era.”

For more about the man credited with ushering in the current NASCAR era, click here.