2021 AMERICAN SPEED FESTIVAL ROARS INTO M1 SEPTEMBER 30
CELEBRATING MOTORSPORTS PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE
PONTIAC, Mich., September 8, 2021 – Officials at M1 Concourse today announced details of the inaugural American Speed Festival that will debut later this month. They include a new festival pass price, celebrity stars, a global live stream, daily entertainment and the first fundraiser for M1’s charitable arm.
The American Speed Festival, the celebration of speed – past, present, and future is designed as a car enthusiast event unlike any other in North America. It celebrates some of the greatest drivers, designers, and cars in motorsports but unlike a static car show, it features two days of live racing in the Speed Ring on M1 Concourse’s 1.5-mile road course.
“The American Speed Festival allows race fans to get close to some of the greatest performance and race cars in the world and learn more about some of the legends of the sport,” said Tim McGrane, CEO of M1 Concourse. “It’s fitting too that our first event in the new Event Center will honor race legend Jim Hall and will benefit our new initiative with the Pontiac Community Foundation, M1 Mobility.”
To make the event more accessible to families, officials announced the Festival Pass is now $75 a person with children under 12 getting in free. “After the success of our recent Woodward Dream Show a few weeks back, we listened to our customers and we’re announcing new, family-friendly prices,” said Dave Sherman, Vice President of Signature Events at M1. “We created a new price for admission, and opportunities to purchase food and drinks separately and added daily live entertainment, including music and RC cars for kids to race themselves. We have also created free rides with a professional driver on Sunday on the M1 Concourse circuit. So, this is truly a celebration of racing and performance for our guests.”
Master of Motorsports Jim Hall
Each year, the American Speed Festival will have a featured class of cars and honor a legend of the industry. The featured class will be the legendary Can Am race cars from the 1960s and 1970s, and the first “Master of Motorsports” award will go to Motorsport Hall of Fame racing innovator Jim Hall.
“As we honor Jim Hall, we are also showcasing racing innovation,'' said McGrane. “Jim Hall’s advancements in terms of aerodynamics and engineering advancements have far reaching implications for the automotive world. It is our honor to be showcasing and running his personal race cars which are coming directly from his museum in Texas.”
“I don’t know that there is anyone who, by himself, changed the sport of auto racing globally as much as Jim Hall,” said George Levy, president of the Motorsport Hall of Fame of America and the author of an upcoming authorized biography of Hall that will come out in 2021. “To car crazy kids like me in the 1960s, Jim Hall was the Neil Armstrong of motorsports during that time.”
Other ASF Stars
Other racing stars of note featured at ASF include legendary Indy 500 champion driver and team owner Bobby Rahal, who will bring his newly restored 1966 Eagle-Ford V8 Indy car to ASF for demonstration runs and motorsport Hall of Famer David Hobbs.
Also detailed at today’s media event is a global livestream of the on-track events on Friday and Saturday, produced by nationally known racing television producers at SpeedSport TV, and hosted by long-time network motorsport television host Ralph Shaheen, who has done broadcasts for FOX, NBC, CBS, and MAV-TV.
Giving Back to Pontiac
Terese Zlotoff of M1’s philanthropic arm, the Checkered Flag Challenge, and Dustin McClellan of Pontiac Community Foundation detailed the Checkered Flag Ball on Saturday, October 2. M1’s inaugural fundraising will benefit M1 Mobility — a new initiative in partnership with Pontiac Community Foundation to provide transportation solutions that connect Pontiac residents with essential community services and programs.
A Weekend of Motorsports Fun
The American Speed Festival kicks off on Thursday, Sept. 30 with an exclusive “Dine and Drive” event throughout Metro Detroit for behind the scenes looks at some of the great automotive history of the Motor City. This is a separate ticketed event.
Friday and Saturday feature high-speed on-track activity utilizing the M1 Concourse “Speed Ring.” Sunday will feature the American Speed Festival Exposition, a judged competition of the best of the best car classes during the weekend, and a chance to enthusiasts to get up close to some of the greatest cars in North America and the world. And on Sunday guests have the opportunity to ride in either a Dodge or Lexus M1 Concourse Performance fleet car with a professional driver on the M1 Concourse circuit. There is no fee.
Other separately ticketed events include Friday evening’s ASF Garage Reveal and Saturday evening’s Checkered Flag Ball which is a benefit.
ASF Garage Reveal at M1 Concourse is a unique opportunity to peek inside some of the most extraordinary built-out garages. The evening includes a trip along the “Bourbon Trail” with tastings, pairings of food, wine, and spirits.
The Checkered Flag Ball on Saturday starts with a Cocktail Reception followed by Dinner and Jazz Performance by Quincy Stewart, the Master of Motorsports Award Presentation, then concludes with the M1 After Party – Dancing and Dessert with music by Ben Sharkey.
Tickets for American Speed Festival are on sale now at $75 for adults and free for children 12 and under. Evening events are ticketed separately. Food and beverages are sold separately. Ticket purchase information and a full schedule of events are available at www.americanspeedfestival.com.