News & Multimedia

Davidson, Travers, Coon Comprise 2010 Class For Auto Racing Hall

Indianapolis Motor Speedway Historian Donald Davidson and Indianapolis 500 chief mechanics Jim Travers and Frank Coon are the 2010 inductees into the Auto Racing Hall of Fame, officials announced April 29.

The induction ceremony will take place Thursday, May 27 at the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown. An esteemed panel of nearly 150 electors, comprised of Hall of Fame members, leading auto racing participants, motorsports journalists and officials, votes annually for Hall of Fame inductees.

"We're honored to welcome Donald Davidson, Jim Travers and Frank Coon into the Hall of Fame," said Jeff Belskus, Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation president and chief executive officer. "All three have made indelible contributions to the history and tradition of IMS and are very deserving of motor racing's highest honor."

Davidson developed a passionate interest in the Indianapolis 500 as a teenager in England. Arriving at IMS in 1964, he delighted the racing community with his ability to recite year-by-year accounts of participants' careers.

Returning permanently in 1965, he was invited by Sid Collins to join the worldwide IMS Radio Network and was hired by Henry Banks as USAC statistician, remaining at USAC for almost 32 years. He was named Indianapolis Motor Speedway historian in 1998, and in 2010, he will be heard on the Indianapolis 500 Race Day radio broadcast for the 47th consecutive year.

Along with numerous television and radio assignments, raconteur Davidson has played host to the popular call-in radio show "The Talk of Gasoline Alley" on 1070 AM in Indianapolis during the month of May continuously since 1971. His writing credits include countless historical articles and columns, a pair of "500" annuals in 1974 and '75 and co-authorship with Rick Shaffer of the acclaimed "Autocourse Official History of the Indianapolis 500," published in 2006.

Travers and Coon often are listed together because professionally, one could hardly be mentioned without the other. Known variously as "The Keck Kids" and "The Rich Kids," they jointly ran the ultra-successful racing team of sportsman Howard Keck.

Already a powerhouse in West Coast Midget racing, Travers and Coon arrived at Indianapolis in 1948 with an Emil Diedt-built front-drive car featuring several revolutionary innovations, such as magnesium wheels (Halibrand) and fuel injection developed by crew member Stu Hilborn. After top-10 finishes with Jimmy Jackson in 1948 and '49, the car placed third in the rain-shortened 1950 "500" with Mauri Rose behind the wheel.

Ever the innovators, Travers and Coon collaborated with Frank Kurtis on the building of the first of the so-called "roadsters," a nickname given by driver Bill Vukovich to their low-slung, offset creation. Vukovich dropped out with a steering failure while leading the 1952 "500" with nine laps to go before bouncing back to win in 1953 and 1954.

In 1957, two years after the untimely death of Vukovich, Travers and Coon formed Traco Engineering, a very successful business which enhanced the performance of Chevrolets for Sprint cars and sports car racing.

The Auto Racing Hall of Fame was established in 1952 by the American Automobile Association. It has been located at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway since 1962.

***

IMS tickets: Established in 1909, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has long prevailed as an icon of motorsports excellence. In 2009, the Speedway began the three-year celebration of its Centennial Era, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the facility in 2009 and the 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race in 2011.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.imstix.com at any time. Tickets for groups of 20 or more also are on sale. Contact the IMS Group Sales Department at (866) 221-8775 for more information. 

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
IMS
 
Davidson, Travers, Coon Comprise 2010 Class For Auto Racing Hall
Indianapolis Motor Speedway Historian Donald Davidson and Indianapolis 500 chief mechanics Jim Travers and Frank Coon are the 2010 inductees into the Auto Racing Hall of Fame, officials announced April 29. The induction ceremony will take place Thursday, May 27 at the Indianapolis Marriott Downtown.
Read More
Related Media
Graham Rahal
 
Rahal Sweeps Detroit Double Header
After winning the opening race of the Verizon IndyCar Series doubleheader weekend front the pole position on Saturday, Rahal started third today in the No. 15 SoldierStrong / TurnsForTroops.com Honda. Rahal led 40 laps and beat Josef Newgarden to the checkered flag by 1.1772 seconds to claim his sixth career Indy car victory and the 25th for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.
Read More
2018 Indy Car Rendering
 
New Images of 'NEXT' Car for Verizon IndyCar Series Unveiled
INDYCAR has released the “NEXT” concept images of the car that will be used by all Verizon IndyCar Series competitors in 2018.
Read More
Nicky Hayden
 
Hayden Remembered as Fan Favorite, Talented World Champion at IMS
2006 MotoGP World Champion Nicky Hayden never won a race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but “The Kentucky Kid” still was one of the most popular, talented and respected racers on two or four wheels to compete at the Racing Capital of the World in the last decade.
Read More
Will Power
 
Power Pushing Hard toward Unique May Double with Penske
Race Day is still a long way away, but as the practice grind intensified Tuesday, Will Power was reminded of the big picture. Not that Team Penske driver Power needed to be reminded, near the end of a six-hour session with 32 cars turning a combined 2,404 laps at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, because he’s very much aware of the unique position he is in entering the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.
Read More
Borg-Warner Trophy
 
Race Fans: Renew Your 2018 Month of May Tickets Now To Lock In 2017 Prices
Fans can renew their tickets now for the 2018 Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil – at 2017 prices – as the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is offering pre-race renewal to its loyal customers for the first time. Fans are encouraged to renew or upgrade their Indy 500 tickets at www.ims.com/renew. The renewal window will continue through 8 p.m. (ET) Sunday, June 18, 500 hours from the anticipated finish time of the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 515
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact IMS Sales Department at (317) 492-8739 or email at hospitalitysales@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
It's Pole day on @CrownRoyal Armed Forces Weekend & we can't wait to see you! Check out details on the day: https://t.co/yKQ6Db3YRK
May 21