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View Full Version : NASCAR Hall of Fame gets off to historic start.....



DIESELMAN
01-27-2007, 02:06 AM
Racing's biggest names, Petty, Jarrett, Waltrip, help out with shovels

http://www.thatsracin.com/images/thatsracin/thatsracin/16552/273973850672.jpg

http://www.charlotte.com/multimedia/charlotte/KRT_packages/archive/nascar07/012507_nascarhall_slideshow/images/GROUNDBREAKING_10.jpg

Under a tent on a brisk, windy January day, NASCAR ushered in the work on its hall of fame in Charlotte with a procession of people whose busts and memorabilia will surely occupy it.

The event was a formal groundbreaking Thursday for the NASCAR Hall of Fame project in uptown Charlotte. But before the shovels were passed out, about 40 of the people who built the sport -- drivers, crew chiefs, team owners, promoters -- were summoned to the stage and introduced.

Among them: Raymond Parks, a Georgia car owner who won his first race in 1938; Ned Jarrett, the former driver and beloved broadcaster from Hickory; and, of course, the sport's iconic figure, Richard Petty.

"I want some autographs," Rick Hendrick, the owner of Hendrick Motorsports, said when his turn came behind the microphone. "I've never seen an assembly of history like we have here today."

Then he turned to NASCAR President Mike Helton, sitting with the rest on stage. "Mr. Helton," Hendrick said, "you wouldn't have 10 percent of these folks in Atlanta, Georgia."

The crowd of about 500 whooped and applauded. Atlanta was Charlotte's main competitor for the hall.

"Charlotte is the place. That's where it started," Petty said.

NASCAR considered proposals from not just Atlanta but Daytona Beach, Fla., Richmond, Va., and Kansas City.

Not everyone in Charlotte is thrilled about the hall, scheduled to open in late 2009 or early 2010. Minutes after the ceremony, the conservative John Locke Foundation sent a mass e-mail criticizing the controversial hotel-motel tax hike providing much of the project's funding.

Fans, though, said they see something that'll last for years and cement Charlotte's status as the hub of motorsports. David Buchner, a 43-year-old stock trader, drove from Asheville with his 5-year-old son, Bradley.

"I wanted to just be part of the history of the hall of fame, to see something he'll spend the rest of his life coming to," said Buchner, whose son wore a tiny Jeff Gordon jacket. "It'll be fun, like Disney World for NASCAR fans."

When it came time for the breaking of ground, two cars on each side of the stage -- a 1972 Dodge Charger of Petty's and a 2000 Chevrolet Monte Carlo once driven by the late Dale Earnhardt Sr. -- were cranked up and revved.

Appropriately enough, you could barely hear yourself think.

"What distinguishes athletes in other sports is when you're in the hall of fame," broadcaster and former championship driver Darrell Waltrip said. "It's going to be grandioso, and that's good. I like big."

Posted by,
GREG LACOUR

It'll be a couple of years before its done but pretty cool and about time.

Steelersfan
01-27-2007, 02:35 AM
Well damn. I never thought about Nascar not having a HOF before. Makes sense they would build it there but I don't understand why cities had to compete and finance the thing!

DIESELMAN
01-27-2007, 03:04 AM
Well damn. I never thought about Nascar not having a HOF before. Makes sense they would build it there but I don't understand why cities had to compete and finance the thing!

I figure its cuz of the revenue it might generate for people to come from all over to visit, kinda like but not quite like trying to get a pro team to your city. Everybody wants it but they gotta pay for it to have it.

Hall of Fame Figures:

$154.5 million: Overall cost of the project.
$102.5 million: Amount contributed to the project by the hotel-motel tax increase.
130,000: Square footage of the hall.
2,500: Number of people the new, $43 million Charlotte Convention Center ballroom, to be built as part of the hall project, will seat. The current ballroom, which will remain, seats about 1,500.
1,060: Parking spaces slated for an adjacent office tower.

Steelersfan
01-27-2007, 03:16 AM
I'm not saying the city won't benefit from it by no means. You just don't usually think of that when it comes to a HOF for any sport. Granted more major sports have had HOF's around for some time now.
You'd just think that a HOF wouldn't need support from any city. It should go where that sports started.

House of Steel
01-27-2007, 10:25 AM
A lot of people complained about Canton being the home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but football was created in Canton with the first professional team being, Canton Bulldogs.

About NASCAR, that is a distinguish honor for Charlotte being the NASCAR Hub to have the Hall of Fame. It is pretty much a gimmie considering the amount of motorsports team that reside in North Carolina.

SteelerDan43
01-29-2007, 02:39 PM
A lot of people complained about Canton being the home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, but football was created in Canton with the first professional team being, Canton Bulldogs.

About NASCAR, that is a distinguish honor for Charlotte being the NASCAR Hub to have the Hall of Fame. It is pretty much a gimmie considering the amount of motorsports team that reside in North Carolina.

Well there is some debate between Canton and Latrobe for the birthplace of professional football. I do believe that a contract for 1 player was found in the past few years that give Latrobe the title.