• Master automotive craftsman Joe Cavaglieri was named the 2017 recipient of the Racing History Project’s Peter Bryant Challenger Award at the project’s “Tribute to IMSA Dinner presented by Mazda,” held in early April at the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum in Pomona, California. The award recognizes outstanding service and personal dedication to motorsports engineering, and Cavaglieri’s career embraces that notion. After decades as a leading race mechanic and crew chief, Cavaglieri opened a racecar restoration business, and is now considered one of the top Porsche experts —with an affinity for restoring early Porsche Spyders —and counts many notable collectors as customers.
• The concept of the annual Road Racing Drivers Club dinner in Long Beach was expanded this year to recognize the 50th anniversary of the Ford Motor Company’s all-American triumph in the 1967 24 Hours of Le Mans with drivers Dan Gurney and A. J. Foyt. As part of the celebration, Edsel B. Ford II presented Foyt with the Spirit of Ford Award, Ford’s highest honor in auto racing, recognizing lifetime achievement and contribution to the industry both on and off the racetrack. “It’s a great honor and Ford has always been good to me,” said the 82-year-old Foyt in accepting the award. “After 50 years, who would have thought that Gurney and I would be around to be honored? It means an awful lot. It’s a big honor for Ford to do this for us.”