The Sebring Hall of Fame has announced its 2018 inductees. A.J. Foyt, Rinaldo “Dindo” Capello, Paul Newman, Joest Racing and the civic organization Sebring Firemen, Inc. will join Sebring’s prestigious Hall of Fame in 2018.
The induction dinner will take place Friday, March 16, the night before the 66th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. The Chateau Elan Hotel and Conference Center will host the event.
A.J. Foyt is an American motorsports legend. In 1985 he drove the Swap Shop Porsche 962 to victory with Bob Wollek at Sebring in the final victory of his illustrious career. Foyt has two other podium finishes at Sebring: second place in 1967 driving a Ford, and third in 1984 driving a Porsche.
A four-time Indy 500 winner as a driver, plus an additional Indy win as a car owner, Foyt earned a record 159 victories in United States Auto Club (USAC) competition. In 1967 Foyt won the 24 Hours of Le Mans with Dan Gurney driving for Ford. He also won the Daytona 500 in 1972 and twice co-drove the winning car at the Rolex 24 in Daytona.
Foyt will be serving as Grand Marshal for the Sebring 12-hour race.
Rinaldo “Dindo” Capello has five overall Sebring victories, second all-time behind Tom Kristensen, one of his teammates on the incredible Joest Audi team that dominated the American Le Mans Series. His wins came in 2001, 2002, 2006, 2009 and 2012. He earned three additional podium finishes at Sebring and a class victory in 2008. The Italian also won the 24 Hours of Le Mans three times.
Paul Newman (1925-2008), actor, director, philanthropist and racecar driver, was one of sports car racing’s greatest boosters. As a driver, he competed at circuits around the world, including Le Mans, Sebring and Daytona. He finished second overall at Le Mans in 1979 and won the GT class at Daytona in 1995 (at the age of 70). Newman recorded many wins in Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) competition, winning four National Championships. He also found success as a team co-owner in the Indy Car series. More importantly, Newman earned the respect of colleagues in both the motorsports and entertainment industry with his professionalism, philanthropy and activism.
Joest Racing, founded by Reinhold Joest in 1978, has been a sports car racing dynasty. At Le Mans, Joest orchestrated an astonishing 15 overall wins in 25 years. His Sebring accomplishments are no less impressive. In 2000 at Sebring, Joest gave Audi their first major international endurance win. They would go on to win Sebring nine more times, setting virtually every record possible at America’s oldest endurance race. In 2018 Joest returns to Sebring managing the Mazda program in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
The Sebring Firemen, Inc., a non-profit organization established in 1927, played a key role in the origin of Sebring’s famed 12-hour classic. Serving as the operational arm for race founder Alec Ulmann, the Sebring Firemen provided critical local manpower to help make the event a success during its formative years. Without the help of this organization, it is unlikely Sebring could have achieved the status of an internationally acclaimed event.
Tickets to the Hall of Fame dinner will go on sale to the public later this month.
The Sebring Hall of Fame was founded in 2002 to recognize the competitors, officials, promoters, manufacturers and teams who helped make Sebring North America’s most historic road racing facility. The Hall of Fame operates the Gallery of Legends building in the Alan Jay paddock, which annually features a display of historic racecars. Hall of Fame inductions are held every other year.