SPEED SPORT Through The Years

Some of the many logos of National Speed Sport News through the years.
Some of the many logos of National Speed Sport News through the years.

Since 1934, SPEED SPORT has been covering motorsports all over the world. As we celebrate our 85th Anniversary, we decided to take a look back at some important moments in SPEED SPORT history.

1934 – The East Paterson Herald Publishing Co. produces the first issue of National Auto Racing News on Aug. 16. Later that year, Chris Economaki sells his first copy of this newspaper.

1937 – A special promotion offers a one-year subscription for $1, a 50-percent savings off the regular price.

1940 – NARN hosts the first National Convention of the auto-racing fraternity in New York City.

1942 – With auto racing banned for the duration of the war, the final issue of NARN is published on Nov. 19.

1943 – NARN’s successor, National Speed Sport News, is introduced in February by The Kay Publishing Co., with William Kay continuing as editor.

1944 – Published monthly, NSSN features stories about post-war racing plans along with columns and old race reports.

1945 – At 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 16, the government ban on auto racing is lifted. NSSN begins publishing every two weeks.

1947 – Weekly publishing resumes May 7.

1949 – NSSN moves from East Paterson, N.J., into the Ridgewood News building in Ridgewood, N.J.

Chris Economaki (left) interviews A.J. Foyt. (NSSN Archives Photo)
Chris Economaki (left) interviews A.J. Foyt. (NSSN Archives Photo)

1950 – Editor Bill Kay suffers a fatal heart attack at age 62. Associate editor Chris Economaki is promoted to editor.

1955 – Race fan William Thomas of Converse, S.C., earns $50 for winning the Daytona Speed Week Quiz sponsored by NSSN.

1956 – A.J. Foyt appears on the cover for the first time of the Sept. 12 issue.

1962 – The name of Chris Economaki’s column changes from Gas-O-Lines to From the Editor’s Notebook.

1963 – Pepsi becomes the first non-automotive consumer product to advertise.

1967 – Yearly subscription price increases to $7, the first change in 12 years.

1970 – The height of the paper is reduced from 16.5 to 15.5 inches.

1975 – A new logo, the first since 1952, debuts and features the words Speed Sport in large bold letters.

1977 – Cover price increases from 35 cents to 50 cents.

1983 – Microfilm copies of NSSN and its predecessor, National Auto Racing News, are added to the permanent collection at the Library of Congress.

1984 – Isuzu Trucks is the first company to include spot color in an advertisement.

1985 – NSSN ends its association with the Ridgewood News in February and moves from 30 Oak St. to 79 Chestnut St. in Ridgewood, N.J.

1986 – Several design changes, including a new logo, debut in the May 7 issue.

1987 – The first four-color photograph, featuring the 1988 Indy 500 pace car, appears in the Oct. 28 issue.

1988 – Chevrolet places the first four-color advertisement in the Feb. 3 issue.

The Sept. 13, 1995 issue of National Speed Sport news.
The Sept. 13, 1995 issue of National Speed Sport news.

1990 – Corinne Economaki becomes the third publisher as Chris Economaki is named publisher emeritus.

1991 – As of Aug. 1, the newsroom no longer accepts dictated copy.

1992 – The business office begins accepting credit cards for subscription purchases and renewals.

1993 – For the first time, readers have the option of purchasing a two-year subscription.

1995 – Starting with the Sept. 13 issue, the cover price increases from $1 to $2.

1996 – A special feature celebrates the centennial anniversary of the first oval-track auto race.

1997 – NSSN relocates from Ridgewood, N.J., to Harrisburg, N.C.

1999 – A special feature ranks the 24 Greatest Sprint Car Drivers with Steve Kinser No. 1.

2000 – The June 7 issue marks the first time the mailing address is printed directly on the cover, eliminating the use of labels.

2001 – Starting in November, content from the pages of NSSN is available online.

2002 – The design of NSSN undergoes a complete makeover, including a new logo, and the refreshed look debuts with the Feb. 6 issue.

2004 – As part of the paper’s 70th anniversary, a poster featuring an illustrated history of auto racing is distributed as a subscription premium.

2006 – Editorial content is adjusted to include more feature stories and columns in each issue.

The first issue of SPEED SPORT Magazine, which published in March of 2012.
The first issue of SPEED SPORT Magazine, which published in March of 2012.

2008 – A presence is established on social-networking websites MySpace and Facebook.

2009 – National Speed Sports News celebrates its 75th anniversary.

2011 – National Speed News ceases publication with the March 9 issue.

2012 – Turn 3 Media acquires the rights to the brand and returns to the marketplace with the first issue of SPEED SPORT Magazine.

2014 – SPEED SPORT Productions is launched with numerous video projects, including SPEED SPORT on MAVTV.

2017 – Turn 3 Media acquires Sprint Car & Midget magazine, adding to the company’s media portfolio.