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Kurt Johnson Receives Appreciation Award at Summit Motorsports Park’s Edelbrock Banquet of Champions


By Mary Lendzion

Photo by Mike Davis

With a whopping $1.6 million track reconstruction underway at Summit Motorsports Park last spring, there was an enormous amount of enthusiasm and excitement surrounding the start of the race season.

But with that came an enormous amount of expectation.

Expectation that the track would be perfect for any type of vehicle, perfect for any type of tire, perfect for any speed and perfect for record-setting runs.

There was even expectation that it would dry quickly after rainfall.

To ensure all of that, Summit Motorsports Park staff worked with contracted companies during the project, and toward the end, Summit Motorsports Park staff, including Evan Bader, Nettie Damron, Sam Lance and others, ramped up their efforts and began working around the clock, regardless of weather conditions, to prepare the track.

Upon hearing that the push was on and the first event of the season, the Cavalcade of Stars presented by Budweiser, was fast-approaching, Kurt Johnson of Total Venue Concepts jumped in to help.

Kurt, who is always thinking of ways to elevate everything from a race track and race track equipment to a race itself, worked day and night with Summit Motorsports Park staff to efficiently, effectively and expertly prepare the track for the hundreds of racers who were counting the minutes before they could be among the firsts to fire up and fly down it.

As he used a mix of his equipment and Summit Motorsports Park equipment, he was absolutely focused on the task at hand, and not at all on how tiresome it was. When it was all said and done, racers were ready, willing and able to go wide-open throttle down the new track, and they did.

But Kurt didn’t stop there. He returned to help prepare the track for a test session for professional drivers the day after the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals in June, for the Ten Grand Nationals presented by Hughes Performance in August, and the Summit Racing Equipment Shakedown at the Summit presented by Mickey Thompson Tires & Wheels in September.

Compliments poured in, and having helped Summit Motorsports Park staff prepare one of the best tracks in the country, Kurt, the NMCA/NMRA competition director, climbed into his truck and headed to the next track that needed him, his knowledge and know-how

It was with gratitude that Summit Motorsports Park president Bill Bader Jr. presented Kurt with an Appreciation Award at Summit Motorsports Park’s 45th Annual Edelbrock Banquet of Champions presented by Lincoln Electric on Jan. 19 at Kalarari Resorts and Conventions in Sandusky, Ohio.

Mary Lendzion
Mary Lendzion
Formerly a writer at the Detroit Free Press, Mary Lendzion has written for NMCA and NMRA for more than ten years. She's also the director of media and public relations for Summit Motorsports Park, and spends as much time as possible racing her 8-second Mustang.