Jeff Gordon Honored at Martinsville Speedway
Sunday November 1, 2015
Martinsville Speedway President Clay Campbell presented Jeff Gordon with the H. Clay Earles Award.
The award, given for “Outstanding Dedication to Auto Racing”, was established in 2000 and is named for Martinsville Speedway Founder H. Clay Earles.
“Jeff Gordon is one of the greatest drivers NASCAR has ever seen,” Campbell said. “However, if you look at what he has meant to the sport – the commitment he has made to it and the role he played in helping grow it to a popularity never seen before – that’s what I’ll think of when I look back on his career and that’s what the H. Clay Earles Award is all about.”
Gordon, an eight-time Martinsville winner, said receiving the award means a lot, for a variety of reasons.
“It’s really special, especially knowing they don’t give that out every year,” he said. “I’m honored. I love this place. The family has been so good to this sport, so good to me.
“This place is special; more than just the race track. It’s what they’ve done to the track to keep it authentic, to keep the fans engaged. I’m really honored by it.”
Former NASCAR President Bill France Jr. was the first recipient of the award.
H. Clay Earles Award Recipients:
2000: Bill France Jr.
2001: Chris Economaki
2002: Junie Donlavey
2003: Bill Joyner
2004: Darrell Waltrip
2005: Dick Thompson
2006: Richard & Kyle Petty
2007: Phil Homer (Goodyear)
2008: T. Taylor Warren
2009: Rick Hendrick
2010: Barney Hall
2011: Huggins Tire
2012: No Award Given
2013: Maurice Petty
2014: No Award Given
2015: Jeff Gordon