Thursday, June 25, 2009


Wednesday, on the day the 75th anniversary issue of National Speed Sport News was published, editor Chris Economaki was the Newsmaker on my The Race Reporters radio show on . President/publisher Corinne Economaki and award-winning NSSN writers Dave Argabright and Susan Wade joined me for the journalists' roundtable.

I asked Chris what has been the most important story covered in the pages of NSSN during the last 75 years:

"That was in 1935 with the general acceptance of the crash helmet by people in American auto racing . . . It was an incredible move. The death rate in American racing to that point was horrendous. The crash helmet saved life-after-life-after-life. When everybody decided to use one, it was a big story."

What is America's most important race, the Indianapolis 500 or Daytona 500?

"The Daytona 500 is important because it is heavily promoted. The Indianapolis 500, unfortunately, is not heavily promoted. It's presented and managed well, but it isn't promoted well. That is the big difference. You have to beat the drums for your event and the Indianapolis 500 doesn't have a drum beater."

Who is the greatest driver you've seen?

"It's a toss-up between A.J. Foyt and Mario Andretti. It's a difficult question to answer. One of those two is, without question, the senior performer in American auto racing."

Listen to the entire show by using this link:

The Race Reporters podcast is now available on iTunes:

Upcoming guests:

July 1 -- Newsmaker: Richard Petty. Panelists: Mike Harris, Lewis Franck.

July 8 -- Newsmaker: Ron Capps. Panelists: Jim Pedley, Jeff Burk, Alan Reinhart.

July 15 -- Newsmaker: Scott Atherton. Panelists: Larry Edsall, Greg Creamer, Jonathan Ingram.

[ more next Tuesday . . . ]