On June 27, dignitaries from the motorsports industry will join in tribute to team owner and former racecar driver Bobby Rahal when he receives the sixth annual Cameron R. Argetsinger Award for Outstanding Contributions to Motorsports.
Rahal will be honored by the International Motor Racing Research Center at a dinner at the Corning (N.Y.) Museum of Glass presented by Sahlen’s, NASCAR, International Speedway Corporation, Watkins Glen International and IMSA.
The award memorializes Cameron R. Argetsinger, organizer of the first races at Watkins Glen and a founder of the IMRRC. Jim France and the France Family, recognized for bringing prestige to the sport and demonstrating commitment to the future of racing, were the 2018 honorees.
J.C. Argetsinger, one of nine children of the late Cameron and Jean Argetsinger, and former President of the IMRRC, will present the award.
Longtime race reporter Dr. Jerry Punch will be the master of ceremonies for a program that includes remarks from Joe Sahlen, President of Sahlen’s; WGI President Michael Printup; Scott Atherton, President of IMSA; INDYCAR President Jay Frye; Nick Craw, former FIA Senate President; Chip Ganassi, inaugural recipient of the Argetsinger Award in 2014; and Roger Penske, who accepted the award
John Saunders, Chairman of the IMRRC’S Governing Council, also will speak. Saunders has been President of ISC since 2009. Also on the podium will be T.E. McHale, Manager of Motorsports Public Relations of American Honda; and Victor Leleu, Motorsport Manager of BMW of North America.
In addition to Sahlen’s, NASCAR, ISC, WGI and IMSA, award dinner sponsors and supporters include Corning Enterprises and Corning Incorporated Foundation, Team Penske, Hilliard Corp., Welliver, Elmira Savings Bank, Honda Racing, Porsche Cars North America, BMW of North America, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, Chip Ganassi Racing, SCCA Inc. and Foundation, Gorsline Company, Byers Automotive, Michelin and Glenora Wine Cellars. The dinner is also supported by IMRRC Governing Council members Gregory G. Galdi, Larry Kessler, Bob Newman and Archie Urciuoli.
A video tribute produced by IMS Productions and narrated by TV commentator Leigh Diffey will be shown, along with shout-outs from other motorsports notables, including 2015 Argetsinger Award recipient Richard Petty; Mario Andretti, recognized in 2017; and Jim France, representing the France Family, honored last year.
The evening will conclude with the live auction of an original, commissioned painting by motorsports artist Randy Owens depicting Rahal’s 1986 Indy 500 victory. A silent auction will offer a variety of items from corporate leaders in the motorsports industry and the Finger Lakes Region of New York, and members of the IMRRC’s Governing Council.
Two cars will be displayed, representing Rahal’s career as an IndyCar driver and as a current team owner in the IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship: The No. 05 1989 Lola T8900 Cosworth that Rahal drove on IndyCar road and street circuits, scoring the only win for a Cosworth engine and for Rahal during the 1989 season; and the BMW M8 GTE, introduced in 2018 at the Rolex 24 At Daytona. In 2019, it was driven to victory for BMW Team RLL at the Rolex 24 by Connor De Phillippi, Augusto Farfus, Colton Herta and Philipp Eng, 43 years after its ancestor, the legendary BMW 3.0 CSL won the Florida classic.
The IMRRC’s 2019 fundraising raffle car, a 1986 Ferrari 328 GTS, will also be on view.
Rahal is being recognized for his achievements not only as a driver and winning team owner, but for his commitment to the future of racing, through his support of the Road Racing Drivers Club SAFEisFAST and Team USA Scholarship initiatives, and having served as the Chairman of the IMRRC Governing Council from 2015-2018.
The Cameron R. Argetsinger Award Dinner on June 27 at the Corning Museum of Glass is open to the public, but tickets are limited. The ticket price is $250 per person. Tables of 10 are also available. The dinner precedes the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen weekend at WGI.
Tickets may be purchased online at 2019 CRA Tickets or by calling the IMRRC at (607) 535-9044.