Harvick, Allisons to appear at Joliet Race Fan Rally
By Tony Graf firstname.lastname@example.org February 26, 2013 7:44AM
Kevin Harvick | AP Photo
Updated: March 28, 2013 6:20AM
JOLIET — Kevin Harvick, the champion of the first two major NASCAR races at Chicagoland Speedway, will appear at the Race Fan Rally in September in downtown Joliet.
Bobby Allison, a NASCAR Hall of Famer, and his brother Donnie Allison, also a history-making racer, also will appear at the rally.
This year’s Race Fan Rally will be from 4 to 10 p.m. Sept. 12, bringing fans to downtown on the Thursday evening before the racing weekend. The downtown event will feature family fun, NASCAR drivers, show cars, a classic car show, simulators, an interactive KidZone, food from local restaurants, and musical entertainment.
The Joliet City Center Partnership is planning for the rally to kick off a busy weekend at the track, which includes the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series on Sept. 13, the Dollar General 300 Powered by Coca-Cola on Sept. 14, and the Geico 400 on Sept. 15.
In 2001, Harvick won the inaugural Tropicana 400 in Joliet. In 2002, Harvick returned to Joliet and outran runner-up Jeff Gordon to repeat as champion. In the ’02 race, 11 different drivers led at one time or another, and there were 19 lead changes.
Harvick knows how to bring racing excitement to Chicagoland Speedway — the 1.5-mile, D-shaped, tri-oval racetrack that gives Joliet the largest sporting facility in Illinois.
Bobby Allison was the Winston Cup Series champion in 1983, won the Daytona 500 three times and was named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers in 1998, according to the website www.bobbyallison.com.
Donnie Allison has a career history including 10 Winston Cup wins in 239 starts, 78 top five finishes and 115 top 10 finishes, according to the website.
In one incredible weekend in 1970, he finished fourth in the Indianapolis 500 and then won the World 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, the website said.
On Monday, a crowd cheered at the Joliet Area Historical Museum as rally consultant Michael Guglielmucci announced the upcoming appearances by Harvick and the Allisons. Scott Slocum, Richard Fredrickson and Guglielmucci — all well-known broadcasters on Joliet radio station WJOL-AM (1340) — hosted the Monday event.
Guglielmucci commended City Beverage and Budweiser for their involvement in the Race Fan Rally.
Also at this year’s rally:
The Monster Energy Show Car will be featured.
The band Seventh Heaven will perform on stage.
The Wells Fargo stagecoach will lead the semis in the Hauler Parade.
For more information, visit the Race Fan Rally event website at www.racefanrally.com.