DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 9, 2018) - Planning and preparation for the 2018 season reached an important milestone this week as track services professionals from the U.S., Canada and Mexico participated in the 18th annual NASCAR Safety and Operations Summit presented by American Medical Response.
The three-day conference, held at the Concord (North Carolina) Convention Center, featured numerous presentations and small-group seminars that addressed best practices in the safety, track services, medical and security functional areas.
"The Summit is a key part of our commitment to providing world-class support to our fans and competitors," said Jim Cassidy, NASCAR senior vice president, racing operations. "It also serves as an opportunity to recognize the dedicated professionals behind the scenes who contribute to the success of our sport."
This year's keynote speech was delivered by Dr. Ed Racht, chief medical officer for AMR and associate chief medical officer of Evolution Health, who has served for more than 20 years in the medical field.
Amid the training sessions, NASCAR also presented awards to individuals and tracks for outstanding performance during the 2017 season. The 2017 honorees included:
• Mission Award: Tim Arfons
• Teamwork Award: Darlington Raceway
• Innovation Award: Jay Donnay and Jason Payne
• Excellence in Track Services Award: Ignatius Kosier, Atlanta Motor Speedway
• Norrie Baird NASCAR Track Services Training Award: Andrew Brandl, Road America
• Above and Beyond Award: Chuck Willard, Chicagoland Speedway
• Medical Director Award: Dr. Douglas Swanson, Dr. William Liang
• Nursing Director Award: Connie Tompkins, Kerry Lane
• Teamwork Award: Charlotte Motor Speedway, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park
• Security Award: Chief Gary J. Gacek, Concord NC Police Department, Doug Cremer and Tom Vesey, Charlotte Motor Speedway; Alan Watson and Andy McWilliams, Talladega Superspeedway; Greg Scott and Darren Cook, Kansas Speedway; Matt Brannock, Martinsville Speedway; Bill Hindman and Brett Adams, ISM Raceway; Jay Fraioli and Al Garcia, Homestead Miami Speedway
The 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will kick off the 2018 season with the Advance Auto Parts Clash on Sunday, Feb. 11 at Daytona International Speedway. The 60th running of The Great American Race, the Daytona 500, is scheduled for Sunday, February 18. Both races will be broadcast live on FOX, MRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
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