Hall of Fame and Museum Offers Race Week Tours and Extended Hours
For the first time during a race week, the International Motorsports Hall of Fame and Museum (IMHOF) is continuing with track tour service along with the extension of museum tour hours. This will allow fans more opportunities to peer back into racing’s unique history and view the track at its busiest time.
Track tours, which are normally not available during race week, will continue through Thursday evening. Fans choosing the tour experience will observe sights and sounds around the track that can be seen only twice a year.
While touring the museum, visitors will walk through three buildings and an enclosed courtyard of racing vehicles with memorabilia spanning decades. Like any museum, as long as motorsports continues to grow, the addition of new exhibits will never be complete, making the IMHOF an attraction for both new and returning fans.
Some of the museums most notable highlights include the 48-foot Cougar Cat Gentry Turbo Eagle Superboat. Housed under the covered pavilion, the record setting Superboat is visible from every display hall at the Museum.
The massive boat was owned and piloted by Tom Gentry who set a World Superboat speed record of 148.238 mph around a New Orleans, La. course in 1987. With Norman Gentry navigating and John Connor working the throttle on the four 1,400 hp engines, the three-man crew hit straightaway speeds of over 170 mph. In 1991, the crew used the same boat to win the Offshore Professional Tour Championship.
The Budweiser Rocket car is another popular exhibit. Powered by a 48,000 horsepower V-4 hydrogen peroxide rocket and 12,000 horsepower Sidewinder missile, the rocket car streaked to phenomenal speeds in 1979. While its official top speed is up for debate, there is no doubt that it reached well over 700 mph.
At more than 39 feet long and just 20 inches wide, it resembles a missile on wheels and can accelerate from 0-140 mph in one second flat. Other racing vehicles range from stock, Indy and drag cars all the way to an airplane once piloted by Bobby Allison.
Opened in April of 1983, the International Motorsports Hall of Fame and Museum is dedicated to the preservation of the history of motorsports. Hours of operation will extend to, Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. with track tour service Monday-Thursday. Admission to the museum is $10 for adults, $5 for kids age 7 to 17 and free for kids age 6 and younger.