(Note: This is the seventh and final of a series of press releases on the 2017 inductees into the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame. The 14th Annual Induction Ceremony, presented by Gateway Motorsports Park, will be held June 22 at the Meritage Resort in Napa, Calif.)
PHOENIX (June 20, 2017) – Kenneth (Kenny) Takeuchi, a public-address announcer and media relations director, became a familiar figure at racing events throughout northern and central California from the late 1950s. The Fresno, Calif. native began his career at the old Selma (Calif.) Rodeo Grounds.
When hardtop and supermodified racing blossomed a few years later, Takeuchi followed the three and four-night a week circuit to NASCAR tracks at Kearney Bowl, San Jose Speedway, Clovis Speedway and Altamont Speedway.
He was among sport’s most visible figures, interviewing top competitors from trackside and following up with post-race results and columns in the various trade papers of the day.
Takeuchi was inducted into the San Jose Speedway Hall of Fame in 1995 with this observation: “He began his day in the pits with note pad in hand, taking down notes about every driver. He knew their birthdays, anniversaries, things about their work and so much more.
“He cared about ‘his’ drivers. He tagged many drivers with nicknames: “The Campbell Comet,” “Quick Nick,” “The Caruthers Cannonball,” and “Mombo Pombo.”
“He was a very gracious gentleman and made everyone feel special.”
The fifth media category inductee, Takeuchi remains active with several vintage racing organizations.
Takeuchi joins Walker Evans, Michael Gaughan, Joe Leonard, Gene Price, Scott Pruett and Frank Secrist in the 2017 WCSCHOF class of inductees.
The 2017 induction ceremonies, presented by Gateway Motorsports Park, are open to the public on a limited, space-available basis. Reservation information is available by emailing the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame:
The West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame was conceived in 2001 as a means of recognizing significant contributors and contributions to the sport of stock car racing. The mission of the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame is founded to preserve history and heritage of the important role west coast stock car competitors have played in the sport’s development and continuation and to recognize, through annual enshrinement, of outstanding individuals and groups within the sport such as, but not limited to, designers, engineers, mechanics, drivers, race track owners, promoters, publicists and members of the motorsports media.
Owen A. Kearns