Automotive innovator and race car designer Frank Kurtis was recently honored as the winner of the Justice Brothers — Shav Glick Award for 2009.
The 9th Annual Justice Brothers sponsored award was presented during the pre-race ceremonies at the NASCAR AUTO CLUB 500 at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. The award is named in honor of Shav Glick, a long-time motorsports writer for the Los Angeles Times and a member of the Motorsports Hall Of Fame.
Kurtis devoted his professional life to innovative race car theory and design, resulting in the supercharged V-8-powered, front-wheel-drive Novi Governor Special, which set a new track record of 133.944 mph at Indy in 1946. Another car designed by his company Kurtis Kraft, broke that record in 1950. Also in 1950, a Kurtis-built rear-drive racer with independent front suspension, and driven by Johnnie Parsons, won the Indy 500. Many design innovations were to follow, including his 1952 Indy roadster, in which the driver sat beside the drive shaft instead of over it.
Kurtis cars won five Indianapolis victories in six years.
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