GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA
HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION 375
A JOINT RESOLUTION honoring north carolina's GREAT NASCAR LEGENDS ralph DALE EARNHARDT, sr., RALPH lee EARNHARDT, LEE PETTY, adam kyler petty, julius timothy "TIM" FLOCK and his companion jocko flocko, edwin keith "BANJO" MATTHEWS, CURTIS morton TURNER, edward glenn "FIREBALL" ROBERTs, elzie wylie "BUCK" BAKER, sr., and african-american racing pioneer wendell oliver scott, AND Encouraging NASCAR to select North carolina as the location for its hall of FAME.
Whereas, North Carolina takes great pride in its position as the stock car racing capital in the United States and the world and is the "Hub of Motorsports in the United States"; and
Whereas, motorsports events have become and remain hugely popular with the people of North Carolina, with more than one million fans attending motorsports events in the State each year, thereby substantially enhancing the tourism industry in North Carolina; and
Whereas, after World War II, stock car racing evolved in the foothills, the pinewoods, and the Piedmont, quickly becoming one of the deepest traditions in North Carolina popular culture; and
Whereas, North Carolina's motorsports industry has an annual economic impact of $5.1 billion and creates an excess of 24,000 jobs with an average income of over $69,000; and
Whereas, North Carolina is in the running to be the site of the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) Hall of Fame; and
Whereas, 82% of the Nextel Cup Series, 72% of the Busch Series, and 55% of the Craftsman Truck Series teams are headquartered in North Carolina; and
Whereas, Lowe's Motor Speedway, which is located in North Carolina, hosts two NASCAR Nextel Cup Series and NASCAR Busch Series races, the NASCAR Nextel All-Star Challenge, and a number of other important NASCAR events; and
Whereas, North Carolina is the ideal location for the NASCAR Hall of Fame because it is host to the NASCAR Business Cluster; and
Whereas, North Carolina was host to the first race held in NASCAR's top division - at the time called "Strictly Stock", currently known as Nextel Cup - on June 19, 1949, at the old Charlotte Speedway; and
Whereas, the field of 33 drivers in the first "Strictly Stock" contained nine men who would later achieve Hall of Fame status, including North Carolinians Elzie Wylie "Buck" Baker, Sr., Jim Paschal, Lee Petty, and Herb Watson Thomas; and
Whereas, North Carolina has produced more NASCAR Nextel Cup (formerly Grand National and Winston Cup) champions than any other state in the nation; and
Whereas, a number of NASCAR legends have significant ties to this State, including Ralph Dale Earnhardt, Sr., who died February 18, 2001; Ralph Lee Earnhardt, who died September 26, 1973; Lee Petty, who died April 5, 2000; Adam Kyler Petty, who died May 12, 2000; Julius Timothy "Tim" Flock, who died March 31, 1998, and his companion monkey Jocko Flocko; Edwin Keith "Banjo" Matthews, who died October 2, 1996; Curtis Morton Turner, who died October 4, 1970; Edward Glenn "Fireball" Roberts, who died July 2, 1964; Elzie Wylie "Buck" Baker, Sr., who died April 14, 2002; and
Whereas, Wendell Oliver Scott, who died December 22, 1990, is the only African-American ever to have won a Grand National Series event in NASCAR history; and
Whereas, there are more than six NASCAR-related driving schools headquartered in North Carolina, 10 museums in North Carolina dedicated to motorsports, and the offices of seven motorsports sanctioning bodies, including NASCAR's licensing and research development offices; and
Whereas, North Carolina is the location of two of NASCAR's major television broadcast and production industry partners, "NASCAR Images" and "The Speed Channel"; and
Whereas, several of the constituent institutions of The University of North Carolina System offer programs concentrating in motorsports and automotive engineering; and
Whereas, North Carolina is the home of the prestigious NASCAR Technical Institute, a career school focusing on training and educating tomorrow's workforce in the automotive and motorsports industry, graduating hundreds of students annually who come to North Carolina from all parts of the country to take advantage of this unique opportunity; and
Whereas, several of the North Carolina community colleges offer programs concentrating in motorsports and the performance automotive industries; and
Whereas, on October 21, 2004, Governor Michael F. Easley recognized Bill France, Jr., past Chairman and CEO of NASCAR, with the "Order of the Long Leaf Pine"; and
Whereas, North Carolina has earned the distinction of being the home of the NASCAR racing community and should be the home of the NASCAR Hall of Fame; Now, therefore,
Be it resolved by the House of Representatives, the Senate concurring:
SECTION 1. The North Carolina General Assembly honors the memory of NASCAR legends Ralph Dale Earnhardt, Sr., Ralph Lee Earnhardt, Lee Petty, Adam Kyler Petty, Julius Timothy "Tim" Flock, Edwin Keith "Banjo" Matthews, Curtis Morton Turner, Edward Glenn "Fireball" Roberts, Elzie Wylie "Buck" Baker, Sr., and African-American racing pioneer Wendell Oliver Scott, and as a fitting tribute encourages NASCAR to select North Carolina, the "Destination of Choice" for the loyal fan base of NASCAR race fans and home to more than 1,000 businesses involved in or support of the NASCAR racing community, as the site for its Hall of Fame.
SECTION 2. The Secretary of State shall transmit a certified copy of this resolution to the governing body and officers of the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing.
SECTION 3. This resolution is effective upon ratification.
In the General Assembly read three times and ratified this the 2nd day of March, 2005.
Beverly E. Perdue
President of the Senate
James B. Black
Speaker of the House of Representatives