With the 2012 International Motorsports Industry Show (IMIS) Show at the Indianapolis Convention Center as a backdrop, Lucas Oil made several major announcements regarding its cornerstone Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series in front of 250 journalists and industry VIPS at a special “Lunch with Lucas.” The theme of the luncheon was Lucas’ wide-sweeping commitment to American motorsports, a concept bound by the all-encompassing “American Real” moniker.
After an event introduction by Lucas Oil Executive Vice President Bob Patison and a patriotic keynote speech by company founder Forrest Lucas, motorsports television personality Ken Stout announced that the growing series would be under the direction of racing veteran Ritchie Lewis, who will serve as series director effective immediately. Lewis is most notably recognized for his instrumental role as series director of the highly successful Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series.
Following his introduction as the new Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series director, Lewis unveiled a revamped management structure for the high profile series. Off-road racing veteran Greg Foutz will serve as race director, while Greg Sheidecker will remain as operations manager. The husband and wife team of Lee and Poppy Perfect have been named assistant race director and administration manager. Gary Lane will remain as technical director.
Lewis went on to unveil several significant changes to the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series marketing management team. Lucas Oil veteran Manny Gutierrez will be joined by company newcomer Marty Fiolka, former editorial and marketing director of Dirt Sports magazine, to create and implement the series’ highly revamped 2013 marketing and public relations program – a campaign that will also include longtime staffer Ken Johnson.
“I want to extend a special thanks to Forrest Lucas and Bob Patison for the tremendous opportunity to help steer our off-road series into the future,” explained Lewis. “The team we have selected to help manage this growth certainly has the credentials to and expertise to help Lucas reach its goals of enhanced competition, sponsorship acquisition and audience growth. Our collective focus and goal is very clear. We are going to take a great motorsports property and make it even better.”
Lewis and the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series then announced the series’ 2013 schedule. Next season Lucas Oil short course racers will return to many familiar Lucas series tracks, beginning on March 16 at the Firebird International Raceway near Phoenix, Arizona. A second race weekend at Speedworld Off Road Park on April 19-21 precedes the first of two season stops at the newly renovated Lake Elsinore Motorsports Park near Los Angeles May 17-19. The world-class racing facility at Miller Motorsports Park near Salt Lake City will host Lucas racers again on June 21-23rd, followed by the vibrant spectacle of night racing at legendary Glen Helen Raceway on July 26-28.
The final half of the season kicks off at the recently constructed Wild West Motorsports Park in Reno Nevada, followed by the season’s second race under the lights at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. New for 2013 will be a series finale at Lake Elsinore, a race weekend that will once again feature Sunday’s all-or-nothing Lucas Oil Challenge Cup – the richest single day of racing in the sport of four wheel off-road racing.
Before concluding the off-road racing portion of today’s “Lunch with Lucas,” Lewis revealed some significant news for the future of the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing series. Although details are still being finalized, Lucas will be building new tracks for the 2014 season at San Angelo, Texas location and at the company’s luxurious Lucas Oil Speedway at Wheatland, Missouri.
“Bringing the excitement of off-road short course racing to a greater level remains a fundamental cornerstone to the Lucas Oil’s commitment to American motorsports,” shared company founder Forrest Lucas before the presentation began. “We feel confident that Ritchie Lewis and his new management team have the passion, enthusiasm and expertise to make that happen. 2013 is shaping up to be very, very good year for our off-road series and Lucas Oil.”
2013 Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series Schedule:
March 15-17 - Firebird International Raceway - Chandler, AZ
April 19-21 - Speedworld Off Road Park - Surprise, AZ
May 17-19 - Lake Elsinore Motorsports Park - Lake Elsinore, CA
June 21-23 - Miller Motorsports Park - Tooele, UT
July 26-28* - Glen Helen Raceway - San Bernardino, CA
August 23-25 - Wild West Motorsports Park - Sparks, NV
September 19-21* - Las Vegas Motor Speedway - Las Vegas, NV
October 25-27 - Lake Elsinore Motorsports Park - Lake Elsinore, CA
* Night races