Tom Kendall Wins AARWBA Jerry Titus Award; Named AARWBA 1997 Driver of the Year
12 January 1998
For Immediate Release KENDALL CAPS REMARKABLE TRANS-AM SEASON WITH AARWBA 1997 DRIVER OF THE YEAR JERRY TITUS MEMORIAL AWARD ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (January 12, 1998)--Tom Kendall, who earned his record third-consecutive and fourth career Trans-Am Drivers' Championship in 1997, capped his remarkable year by being selected as the American Auto Racing Writers & Broadcasters Association's 1997 Driver of the Year, receiving the AARWBA Jerry Titus Memorial Award. Kendall received the honor January 10 at the annual AARWBA All-America Team Banquet, where he also was also one of three drivers to earn his sixth AARWBA First Team selection, joining Winston Cup champion Jeff Gordon and NHRA Funny Car titlist John Force. Kendall, who was voted to the All-American team for the ninth time, lead all of the 1997 All-American selections in number of times chosen for AARWBA honors. "Receiving the Jerry Titus Memorial Award was the exclamation point on an amazing year for us," said Kendall. "In addition to the obvious thanks to my amazing crew, to my sponsor All Sport, and to Ford, I would like to give special thanks to the AARWBA members for this special award. I have always felt that road racers share a more symbiotic relationship with the media than perhaps some of the other higher profile series and nothing could underscore that fact more than receiving this award." The AARWBA All-America Team annually recognizes the top-12 drivers from the motorsports year. Votes are collected from the AARWBA membership in six categories--road racing, stock car racing, open wheel racing, drag racing, short track and at large. Two previous SCCA Pro Racing drivers have been honored with the Jerry Titus award—Mark Donohue, 1971 (Trans-Am) and ‘73 (Can-Am); and George Follmer, 1972 (Trans-Am and Can-Am). "While I have coveted the Titus Trophy since 1986, this year's events give the award special significance," said Kendall. "In order to surpass Mark Donahue's consecutive win record, I had to win at the track where Mark's streak was broken--Watkins Glen. Fortunately, I did not have to beat the man who broke Mark's streak, Jerry Titus. To have my name on the perpetual trophy is without a doubt the greatest recognition I have received in my career."