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  • Spencer Frady

Lewis & Gurney Named Turkey Night Grand Marshals


Steve Lewis and Chuck Gurney have been named Grand Marshals for the 2023 Turkey Night Grand Prix. Photo courtesy USAC Media - Photographer: John Mahoney Photo

Series News Release - USAC Media


Ventura, California (October 26, 2023) - USAC racing legends Steve Lewis and Chuck Gurney have been named co-grand marshals of the 82nd running of the ARP Turkey Night Grand Prix at California’s Ventura Raceway on Saturday night, November 25.


Lewis, of Laguna Beach, Calif., was one of USAC’s most proficient car owners, capturing six Turkey Night victories with drivers Stan Fox (1990-91), Jason Leffler (1999), Tony Stewart (2000), Bobby East (2004) and Dave Darland (2007).


Nearly every major name driver competed in his legendary “Nine Cars” during his tenure with USAC, racking up 133 National victories. His triumphs include basically every major race in America as well as 10 USAC National entrant titles with drivers Stevie Reeves, Tony Stewart, Kenny Irwin Jr., Jason Leffler, Kasey Kahne, Dave Darland, J.J. Yeley and Bobby East.

The founder of the sport’s highly acclaimed Performance Racing Industry trade show, Lewis set new standards for excellence in the sport. As a race promoter, he organized lucrative race events at Indianapolis Raceway Park and Orlando, Fla. which offered a $50,000 bonus for any driver who could claim double victories in either.


In 2004, Lewis was inducted into the National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame, and in 2006, he was inducted into the Belleville High Banks Hall of Fame in Kansas. He also earned USAC’s coveted Roger McCluskey Award of Excellence in 2009 and was inducted into the USAC Hall of Fame in 2017.


Gurney, of Livermore, Calif, was a stellar performer across the board, and in 1988-89, he was victorious in consecutive years at the Turkey Night Grand Prix wins at Gardena, California’s Ascot Park for car owner Larry Howard.


In USAC’s Silver Crown wars, Gurney earned 14 victories and the 1989 series championship. He scored a phenomenal seven victories in the Tony Bettenhausen 100 at the Illinois State Fairgrounds, plus three wins in the Ted Horn 100 at the Du Quoin (Ill.) State Fairgrounds and added 1982 and 1983 Hoosier Hundred victories at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.


Furthermore, Gurney captured five USAC National Sprint Car wins and his victories in the Midgets include three wins in the Copper World Classic at Arizona’s Phoenix International Raceway in addition to the 1989 running of the Belleville (Kans.) Midget Nationals.


Gurney, the 1983 NARC Sprint Car king and the 1985 USAC National Supermodified titlist, has been honored five times by the Motorsports Press Association as its open wheel Driver of the Year, and in 2017, was named to the USAC Hall of Fame. Just recently, Gurney was announced as an inductee to the National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame, class of 2023.


Agajanian Promotions presents the 2023 Turkey Night Grand Prix at Ventura (Calif.) Raceway, which begins on Friday, November 24, with USAC NOS Energy Drink Midget National Championship practice, plus USAC West Coast/VRA Sprint Car hot laps, qualifying, heat races and main event. Grandstands open at 3pm Pacific.


On Saturday, November 25, the Turkey Night Grand Prix final night consists of midget hot laps, qualifying, last chance qualifiers, semis and the 98-lap feature, plus sprint car semis and main events. Grandstands open at 3pm Pacific.


Advance tickets, priced from $22-45, can be purchased at www.venturaraceway.com. Additional information is available at 805-648-7223.

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