The exact date of the induction ceremony will be announced at a later time.
“After holding the inaugural induction ceremony in May of 2010 we quickly decided a move to January would give this event a life of its own and would ensure the inductees garner the appropriate amount of attention from the fans, the media and the local community,” said NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France. “In addition to this being the right move for the inductees, we also feel like making this a standalone event will greatly benefit NASCAR fans across the country that are itching for news in the early parts of the year.”
The 2011 NASCAR Hall of Fame induction ceremony remains unchanged and will take place May 23 at 7 p.m. in the Charlotte Convention Center’s Crown Ballroom at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C. The highlight of this year’s event is the official induction of the 2011 NASCAR Hall of Fame class, which features Bobby Allison, Ned Jarrett, Bud Moore, David Pearson and Lee Petty.
“The NASCAR Hall of Fame induction ceremony is the Academy Awards of NASCAR,” said Tim Newman, chief executive officer of Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority. “We believe we can complement the star-studded main event with a full slate of activities that will draw fans from around the country. Race fans already flock to the Queen City in May and October. We plan to work with NASCAR, Charlotte Motor Speedway and the many motorsports businesses in the region to develop January into another must-visit time for the race fan and another opportunity for us to fill hotels, restaurants and attractions.”
The voting panel for the third NASCAR Hall of Fame class will see some new faces with the addition of NASCAR’s Senior Vice President of Racing Operations Steve O’Donnell, President and COO of Speedway Motorsports, Inc. Marcus Smith, NMPA President Rea White, Associated Press motorsports reporter Jenna Fryer and Sirius NASCAR Radio host Dave Moody to the panel.
“Getting inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame is a lifetime achievement for these legends,” said Winston Kelley, executive director of the NASCAR Hall of Fame. “The move to January ensures the spotlight is on them for this special honor. It also gives us more room in the schedule to create a full schedule of induction-related festivities for fans and the industry. January is already a popular time for the NASCAR industry to gather in Charlotte for business meetings, media tours and summits, and we think it is a logical fit to integrate the NASCAR Hall of Fame.”
As a result of the schedule change, voting for the 2012 class will take place June 14 inside the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Fans who purchase a ticket that day can attend this special event.