In an effort to recognize greatness across its premier motorsports facilities, Speedway Motorsports, Inc. (NYSE: TRK) officials have named Sonoma Raceway Director of Facilities, Lino Ramos, as the O. Bruton Smith Award recipient for 2017. In addition, Atlanta Motor SpeedwayPresident and General Manager Ed Clark was recognized as the Speedway Motorsports’ Promoter of the Year and Las Vegas Motor Speedway earned Speedway of the Year honors. The awards were announced Wednesday during Speedway Motorsport’s Annual Awards Ceremony in Las Vegas.
“Speedway Motorsports prides itself on being best-in-class in providing unforgettable entertainment experiences for visitors from around the world year in and year out,” said Marcus Smith, President and CEO of Speedway Motorsports. “We are blessed to have creative and passionate visionaries leading our company to set the industry standard and drive our company forward. It is a privilege to recognize Lino, Ed and the entire team at Las Vegas Motor Speedway for their hard work this year to once again answer that call to put fans first and be the very best.”
Bruton Smith Award
Created five years ago to recognize one employee annually across all of Speedway Motorsports, Inc. and its subsidiaries, the recipient of this prestigious award is someone who exhibits Speedway Motorsports’ Executive Chairman and Founder O. Bruton Smith’s traits: character, enthusiasm, drive, a heart for helping others, respect/appreciation for team members, vision and determination.
A native of Jalisco, Mexico, Ramos joined the raceway’s maintenance staff in 1995 where he quickly began taking on management responsibilities and ultimately assumed the role of director of facilities, a position he has held for more than a decade.
Ramos, along with a full-time staff of 21, oversees preparation and maintenance of the facility for both major events and daily operations. Ramos also conceived and initiated the raceway’s newest motorsports program, Sonoma Drift, which has added more than $1 million in incremental revenue since its inception.
Promoter of the Year
Promoter of the Year is an annual award chosen by Speedway Motorsports, Inc.’s President and CEO Marcus Smith and given to one of eight Speedway Motorsports, Inc. general managers. The Promoter of the Year is awarded to the general manager who best displayed the creativity, innovation, leadership and execution that are fundamental to Speedway Motorsports’ way of doing business.
Clark, who has been a leader in the motorsports industry for more than 40 years, was recognized for his efforts to grow admissions, reduce expenses and bring added media exposure across NASCAR and secondary event weekends, all while establishing the speedway’s place among the top in customer satisfaction.
In 2017, Clark and his team at Atlanta Motor Speedway increased NASCAR admissions and camping. Clark also focused on growing events like the Imagine Music Festival, Georgia State Fair and U.S. Legend Carracing to increase Atlanta Motor Speedway’s overall track rentals for 2017.
Speedway of the Year
Las Vegas Motor Speedway was chosen as Speedway of the Year from among the eight speedways that comprise the Speedway Motorsports, Inc. facilities. The award is presented to the track for the best overall performance during the year in such aspects as fan friendliness, attendance, financial performance, sponsor relations and creativity.
Officials at Las Vegas Motor Speedway worked tirelessly with city and community leaders in 2017 to secure funding to bring a second NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series weekend to the famed 1.5-mile speedway next season. The speedway also announced plans and began construction to expand The Strip to a four-lane drag strip to host its first NHRA four-wide event in 2018.
Boosted by its robust track-rental program, Las Vegas Motor Speedway continues to lead all eight Speedway Motorsports’ facilities in earned revenue. In addition to eyeing future revenue opportunities, the speedway cut 2017 expense.