(Note: This is the third of a series of press releases on the 2018inductees into the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame. The 15thAnnual Induction, presented by Gateway Motorsports Park, will be held June 21 at the Meritage Resort in Napa, Calif.)
AVONDALE, Ariz. (June 7, 2018) – NASCAR and open-wheel team owner Richard “Dick” Woodland and the late Lawrence “Larry” Albedi, the voice of motorsports in the west for five decades, are among 2018 inductees into the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame.
The 15th annual enshrinement ceremonies, presented by Gateway Motorsports Park, will be held June 21 at the Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa, Calif., the annual kick-off event for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup and K&N Pro Series West weekend at nearby Sonoma Raceway.
Woodland built his first race car, a jalopy, in 1958 at age 15. During college, he raced NASCAR hardtops at Kearney Bowl in Fresno, Calif. and following military service drove sprint cars at Ascot Park in Los Angeles. With a growing family, Woodland turned owner and hired West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame inductees Frank Secrist and Parnelli Jones, among others.
Woodland entered the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West with NASCAR and West Cost Stock Car Hall of Famer Ron Hornaday Jr. in 1991 and continued with his son, Rich Jr. In 55 races, they won once (at Phoenix in 1998) and finished fifth in the 1995 standings. After moving the team to Charlotte, they also entered several NASCAR premier series, Xfinity Series, Camping World Truck Series and ARCA events.
Residing in Paso Robles, Calif., Woodland owns an extensive vintage race car museum at the Paso Robles airport.
Although best known for his baritone voice, Albedi was Mr. Everything when it came to automobiles and automobile racing. Born in San Francisco, he became enamored of competition at an early age, working as a pitman for George Bignotti’s racing team in 1947 at Bayshore Speedway.
He raced stock cars and sprint cars for a brief time, before taking promoter Louie Vermeil’s advice that he’d make more money behind a microphone. Race fans in Northern California over the next five decades became accustomed to hearing Abedi’s description of the action. Albedi became known as the “Voice of Sears Point,” the current Sonoma Raceway.
He also raced sports cars and was a steward for the San Francisco Region of the SCCA, inducted into the organization’s Hall of Fame in 2007. “His secret as an announcer is to make everyone sound like a hero,” the organization wrote upon Albedi’s enshrinement.
Albedi opened British Motors of Vallejo in 1963, a dealership that expanded to include Lincoln-Mercury, Subaru and Jaguar marques before its sale in 1996. Albedi passed away in May 2017 at the age of 85.
Woodland and Albedi join Joe Garone, Oren Prosser, Greg Pursley and Bryan R. Sperber in the 2018 WCSCHOF class of inductees. Five Heritage figures also are slated for induction: Freddie Agabashian, George Bignotti, Bill Cheesbourg, Clyde Prickett and Mickey Thompson. All but Prickett are deceased.
The 2018 Induction, presented by Gateway Motorsports Park, is 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.
Over the past three years, the induction has helped raise more than quarter million dollars for charitable causes. The West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization which hopes to see charitable giving reach the $500,000 mark in the next year and a half. The group’s current list of charities and foundations – expected to increase – counts 25 different groups. They include charities dedicated to health, including autism research, children’s cancer, breast cancer and Parkinson’s; education; history; animal rescue; homelessness and military and veterans’ assistance.
For a complete list of the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame’s charity partners please go to http://westcoaststockcarhalloffame.com/our-charities/.
About Gateway Motorsports Park
Gateway Motorsports Park is the home of INDYCAR, NASCAR and NHRA racing in the St. Louis region. Located just five minutes from downtown St. Louis and covering more than 340 acres, Gateway Motorsports Park is the largest outdoor entertainment facility in the area. Gateway Motorsports Park’s facilities include a 1/4-mile drag strip, 1.25-mile superspeedway, 1.6-mile road course, a state-of-the-art karting facility and a 14-acre, multi-purpose dirt off-road venue. Gateway Motorsports Park was the recipient of the 2017 Outstanding Facility of the Year Award from the Race Track Business Conference and the 2017 Spirit of St. Louis Award from St. Louis Attractions Association.
West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame
Owen A. Kearns
Gateway Motorsports Park
(618) 215-8888 ext. 119