They’ve started the ball rolling early this year for the 2014 edition of the Canadian Motorsports Expo Powered by Inside Track Motorsport News.
The news today is that NASCAR Sprint Cup star Ryan Newman will be the guest star at the eighth edition of the popular mid-winter motorsports show that will be held Feb. 7-9 at The International Centre in Mississauga.
The International Centre is a great location for the Expo because it has scads of free parking, a reputation for being the venue for cultural and trade shows that really matter but, most important, it’s directly across the road from Peason International Airport where visiting NASCAR stars can land their private jets and not have that far to go to meet and mingle with their fans.
Michael Waltrip, Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski and Matt Kenseth are just some of the Sprint Cup drivers who have been able to get in and out of town in just a matter of hours because of The International Centre’s proximity to Pearson.
Newman, of course, is the Stewart-Haas Racing driver who’s in the Chase for the Championship (11th place, with four races to go) but will take his Quicken Loans sponsorship with him when he moves to Richard Childress Racing in 2014 to drive the team’s No. 31 Chevrolet.
His appearance at the Expo – on Sat., Feb. 8, by the way – will come a week before the Sprint Unlimited race at Daytona International Speedway and two weeks before NASCAR’s most important race, the Daytona 500.
He’ll have been doing some testing with RCR before the Expo, so will be able to discuss with fans how he feels about being with a new team during an on-stage Q&A session. He’ll also sign autographs and participate in a VIP Meet & Greet.
Newman, 35, who’s married and has two daughters, was Winston Cup Rookie of the Year in 2002 and, among other achievements, has won the 2003 Winston All-Star Race, the 2008 Daytona 500 and this year’s Brickyard 400. In total, he has 17 Cup wins and 51 poles in 430 starts.
"This is a very exciting time for me as a racer," Newman said in a release. "I’m currently in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, driving for Stewart-Haas, but I’m also honoured to be joining Richard Childress Racing in 2014.
"By the time I head to Toronto for the Canadian Motorsports Expo, I’ll have tested with RCR and I’ll be just a few days away from opening a new chapter in my career. I’m looking forward to meeting a bunch of Canadian racing fans, signing a lot of autographs and chatting about the 2014 racing season including trying to win my second Daytona 500 and earn another championship for Richard Childress Racing."
Discussing Newman’s appearance, Expo co-promoter Greg MacPherson said in a release:
"Having Ryan Newman as our headline star on Saturday (Feb. 8) continues the Canadian Motorsports Expo’s tradition of bringing the biggest stars in racing to the show as part of our annual celebration of Canadian motorsports.
"Ryan Newman has won the Daytona 500 and some of the biggest events in NASCAR. He’s driven for Roger Penske, Tony Stewart and now he’s heading to RCR, where Richard Childress and Dale Earnhardt became NASCAR legends.
"Ryan is going to be one of the biggest stories of Speedweeks and we’re excited to welcome him to the CME before he heads to Daytona."
For updates on this and other Expo news, go to their website at: www.CanadianMotorsportsExpo.com
- NORRIS McDONALD