DALLAS — Long-time public relations and marketing specialist Gabrielle Stevenson, 35, was named Texas Motorplex General Manager today by owner Billy Meyer. Stevenson joins the Texas Motorplex after leaving her post at the United Way California Capital Region in Sacramento, California where she managed a broad range of marketing projects including donor relations, branding initiatives, marketing materials as well as Web site content. Stevenson has nearly 10 years of public relations experience working for both the Motorplex and the National Hot Rod Association sanctioning body.
“I am excited to bring someone with Gabrielle’s skill sets into the General Manager position. Her years of public relations and marketing experience will be a big asset for the Texas Motorplex in the North Texas region. She understands how critical public relations and marketing are to the growth of this facility and her positive, can-do attitude will make an immediate impact. We looked at a number of candidates and Gabrielle’s enthusiasm and ideas quickly moved her to the top of the list,” said Meyer.
Built in 1986, the Texas Motorplex was drag racing’s first super track and has hosted NHRA national events since its inception. The first all-concrete drag racing specific race track has consistently led the sport in both on-track performance records and innovative marketing and sponsorship promotions. This year the Motorplex in Ennis, Texas will host the 25th annual O’Reilly Super Start Batteries NHRA Fall Nationals, September 23-26.
“This is an unbelievable opportunity and a challenge that I am looking forward to tackling. The Dallas and particularly the North Texas region is one of the most competitive markets when it comes to sporting events and marketing. We have a great team here at the Texas Motorplex as well as a strong history. I am looking forward to continuing to grow our business, welcoming hundreds of thousands of fans through our turnstiles and developing strong marketing partnerships with our current and future sponsors in 2010 and beyond,” said Stevenson.
Stevenson joins a growing list of female executives and professionals rising to the top tiers of the motorsports industry. Currently Gillian Zucker is the President of Auto Club Speedway, Gill Campbell is CEO/GM of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, Kim Isemann is GM of Daytona 500 Experience and Kim Walters is President of Universal Technical Institute.
The Texas Motorplex has a history of hiring women for management positions. In 2009 Meyer hired Ashley Kellough as Competition Director to oversee the weekly racing program. Kellough has grown the weekly racing program and developed a positive relationship with a number of racing promoters and race teams as the facility’s Competition Director.
“I reached out to Billy when the position became available and really didn’t consider the fact that there weren’t any other women in this kind of position in motorsports. I knew I could do the job and I was looking to get back into motorsports. This was the perfect opportunity and I appreciate Billy taking a chance on me,” added Stevenson.
Stevenson, a 1999 graduate of California State University in Sacramento started her career at the Contra Costa Times as a sports writer before joining the National Hot Rod Association as a media relations manager in 2001. While at the NHRA Stevenson managed all sports information duties for the largest motorsports sanctioning body in the world and expanded their media reach across all media platforms.
Kansas City (Feb. 10, 2010) – Les Shockley knows how to put on a good show.
Of course, some might say it would be difficult not to inspire jaw dropping “oohs” and “awes” when you drive a 1957 Chevrolet truck that produces 25,000 horsepower from two jet engines.
That’s exactly what Shockley will do during several Super Chevy Show series events in 2010. Shockley will help kick off the 30th anniversary season of the Super Chevy Show by driving his Super Shockwave Chevy jet truck down the quarter-mile track at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the season opener March 19-21.
“The ’57 Chevy jet truck is without a doubt the most exciting thing when it comes to Chevrolet and the fans at the Super Chevy shows will absolutely love it,” Shockley said. “I’m thrilled with the new owners of the Super Chevy Show series (SCSW, LLC.), because they are hiring the best-of-the-best to be at the shows this year. I think this is going to be a great partnership and I know the fans will love seeing the jet truck.”
Bill Bader, owner of Summit Motorsports Park in Norwalk, Ohio and host of the June 11-13 event, said the owners were eager to bring the fastest Chevy truck in the world to as many events as possible. Shockley set the record for speed with the truck by going 405 mph from a standing start down a mile-long strip.
“We wanted to make sure our fans get to see the top entertainment,” Bader said. “That includes the Super Shockwave truck, which is recognized as the fastest Chevy truck in the world. The truck runs on two Pratt & Whitney J-34-48 engines and when you see this truck, you can’t help but be in awe of the noise, the fire, the heat, the speed and the fact that it is a ’57 Chevy truck.
“In terms of jet-powered vehicles, this is one of the top features and we are thrilled Shockley will be at so many events this year.”
Shockley has been running the ’57 Chevy jet truck for 18 years and is equally excited to be part of the 30th anniversary Super Chevy Show series. He said he wants to be part of the show for years to come.
“I’m just excited about the whole thing,” Shockley said. “The Super Chevy Show has a bright future and it’s in good hands. They now have the best-of-the-best in terms of owners and tracks. At one time the Super Chevy Show was one of the biggest shows out there and it will be again in a very short amount of time.”
Racers, car show participants, fans, vendors and sponsors can call 800-692-6230 for more information on the Super Chevy Show series or go online at www.superchevyshow.com for details on 2010′s 30th anniversary season. For more information about the Super Shockwave jet truck, check out www.shockwavejets.com.
The Safety Shut-off system is made up of two parts, (above) a vehicle-mounted receiver (arrow) and a guardwall-mounted transmitter (below).
All participants in the Top Fuel dragster and Funny Car classes will be required to use an Electrimotion Safety Shut-off Receiver at the season-opening 50th annual Kragen O’Reilly NHRA Winternationals presented by Valvoline.
The Safety Shut-off Receiver, small enough to fit into a shirt pocket and weighing less than 6 ounces, is installed near the rear of the car on both dragsters and Funny Cars and will activate the previously mandated Electrimotion Safety Shut-off Box when it receives a unique digital message sent to it by the Electrimotion Safety Shut-off Transmitter. The Shut-off Transmitter, which is only slightly larger than the receiver, will be mounted to the guardwall approximately 400 feet past the finish line.
The complete system will initiate a vehicle shutdown sequence – turning off both the ignition and fuel systems and deploying the braking parachute – in the event that the driver is not able to do so.
Only a car passing in close proximity to the transmitter can receive the message, which will help ensure that the receiver does not trigger the system prior to the finish line. A second redundant transmitter will be mounted 600 feet past the finish line on the opposite guardwall from the first transmitter. This redundant transmitter will act as a backup to the primary transmitter in the event the receiver does not receive the message from the first transmitter.
NHRA worked closely with Electrimotion during the 2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series season to test this new safety system. First tests were performed with a few Top Fuel and Funny Car teams using their cars’ existing onboard data-acquisition systems to help monitor performance of the transmitter and receivers. Based on the results of that testing, adjustments were made to both the transmitter and receiver design to optimize performance. Final full-system testing was done during competition at the last two races of the 2009 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series season.
Recently, several teams successfully used the system during preseason testing at Firebird Int’l Raceway. “The system worked flawlessly for us during our preseason testing,” said reigning NHRA Full Throttle Funny Car world champion Robert Hight. “It is a comfort knowing that this system can shut down my engine and deploy my parachutes if I am unable to do so for any reason.”
The NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series will again be televised in 16 one-hour shows on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD, with coverage from select NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series national events. In addition, the popular NHRA Sportsman Spotlights, focusing on NHRA’s member-track network, will air on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD as part of the race coverage.
The NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series will air on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD on a tape-delay basis as part of NHRA’s relationship with ESPN, which enters its 10th year as the exclusive home of NHRA Drag Racing. All 16 telecasts will air Saturday or Sunday. The NHRA Lucas Oil Series has a long-standing tradition of serving as a highly competitive developmental arena for the future stars of the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series.
Returning as anchor of the NHRA Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series telecasts will be longtime NHRA announcer David Rieff, who will be joined in the booth by popular NHRA announcer Bob Frey. Rieff has been involved for many years with NHRA coverage on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD. ESPN2 is available in 98.7 million households.
In addition to his race-coverage duties in the booth, Frey will host the popular NHRA Sportsman Spotlight segments, which will be featured within the race broadcasts on ESPN2 and ESPN2HD. The segments will showcase unique and interesting stories from NHRA member tracks in each of the sanctioning body’s seven divisions. Frey’s schedule of appearances includes Atco Raceway in Atco, N.J. (Aug. 4, Division 1); Orlando Speed World Dragway in Orlando, Fla. (March 6, Division 2); the Lucas Oil Drag Racing Series divisional event at O’Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis (April 24, Division 3); the JEGS NHRA Cajun SPORTSnationals at No Problem Raceway Park in Belle Rose, La. (March 20, Division 4); Cedar Falls Raceway in Cedar Falls, Iowa (July 31, Division 5); Portland Int’l Raceway in Portland, Ore. (Aug. 28, Division 6); and Kauai Raceway Park in Kapaa, Kauai (July 4, Division 7).
Kansas City (Jan. 28, 2010) – Houston Raceway Park has become a shareholder in the Super Chevy Show series and has set a date to be part of the 30th anniversary season in 2010. The Baytown, Texas facility will replace Route 66 Raceway on the schedule and will host a Super Chevy Show for the first time since 2005 on Sept. 10-12.
Seth Angel is Houston Raceway Park’s executive vice president and general manager. He helped get Houston on the Super Chevy Show schedule and is thrilled it could happen so quickly. Houston Raceway Park held Super Chevy Show events every year between 1988-2005.
“The Super Chevy Show event is obviously another marquee event on any racing calendar and it will certainly be a signature event of our racing season,” Angel said. “We’re thrilled to have it back at Houston Raceway Park and I know it is going to fill a huge void in the Houston market.”
SCSW, Inc., bought the series in the fall and the owners have tirelessly worked on preparing for the 30th anniversary season. Billy Meyer, one of the SCSW Inc., owners and the secretary and treasurer of the board of directors, said the schedule has been the top priority.
“We added Houston Raceway Park because we’ve had so many inquiries from fans in the south about the Super Chevy Show series,” Meyer said. “Houston is a great destination for racers in Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana. Houston also is one of the largest commercial and metropolitan markets which gives our sponsors tremendous opportunities.”
Heartland Park Topeka moved the date of its Super Chevy Show up so they could host a Father’s Day weekend event, June 18-20.
Racers, car show participants, fans, vendors and sponsors can call 800-692-6230 for more information on the Super Chevy Show series or go online at www.superchevyshow.com for details on 2010′s 30th anniversary season.
2010 Super Chevy Show Series
Event Date Host Track Location
March 19-21 The Strip at Las Vegas Las Vegas, NV
April 16-18 Virginia Motorsports Park Petersburg, VA
May 21-23 Texas Motorplex Dallas, TX
June 11-13 Summit Motorsports Park Norwalk, OH
*June 18-20 Heartland Park Topeka Topeka, KS
July 16-18 Maple Grove Raceway Reading, PA
August 20-22 Bandimere Speedway Denver, CO
September 10-12 Houston Raceway Park Baytown, TX
September 24-26 Bristol Dragway Bristol, TN
October 22-24 Firebird Raceway Phoenix, AZ
*Indicates a date change