Rudy Bartling to be inducted to the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame 2012

By Emily Atkins, Provinz Associate Editor

Join UCR member Rudy Bartling as he is inducted into the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame on April 21, 2012.

He will be inducted, along with six other Canadians, plus Michael Andretti, at the CMHF‘s annual gala dinner, being held at On the Park Event and Conference Centre at 1095 Leslie Street, Toronto.Rudy would be delighted to see the friendly faces of fellow PCA-UCR members cheer him on at the induction ceremony and dinner. Plus, your ticket supports the Hall of Fame’s main fundraising effort for the year.

The other inductees are: Dick Foley of Montreal, Quebec; Robin Edwardes, of L’Orignal, Ontario; Paul Manson of Toronto, Ontario; Ben Docktor of Calgary, Alberta, Greg Steward of Halifax, Nova Scotia and Norm Ellefson, who now lives in Spokane, Washington.

The Hall of Fame was initially introduced in 1993 and now has over 100 inductees from across Canada. An International category was added two years ago. Michael Andretti joins Bobby Rahal, Carroll Shelby and Professor Sid Watkins as inductees in the International category.

Tickets for the Gala are $195 and are available by Telephone 905-8520-6764; CMHF website at cmhf.ca; galatickets@cmhf.ca or by faxing 905-852-7012.

Canadian Motorsports Heritage Foundation and Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame – Historical BackgroundThe initial concept for the facility was a place to honour and recognize the efforts, achievements and contributions that Canadians have made to the realm of Canadian Motorsports.The Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame was officially opened in 1993, and began inducting honourable members in that year. The first set of inductee recognition panels was displayed in a special section at the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame at the Canadian National Exhibition grounds. The space permitted the display of only one vehicle. This first vehicle was the 1983 March Indycar of Jacques Villeneuve (Sr.) There soon was a need for a larger facility and the search began for a new home for the museum.

In November of 1997, the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame moved to 777 Bay Street. The 7,500 square foot space offered more room and a better display environment for the museum’s exhibits and soon attracted a steady stream of motorsports enthusiasts.

In 2001, the Hall of Fame moved to the Warplane Heritage Museum in Hamilton, Ontario for a short term before acquiring its current space in the Sports Hall of Fame building in Toronto’s Exhibition Place, home of the Molson Indy Toronto race. The 7000 square foot venue housed Canada’s most significant collection of important race cars, motorcycles and a record setting Grand Prix boat. More vehicles are coming available to the collection and a massive archive is being accumulated documenting Canada’s motorsport history. The Board is now looking to the future needs of the Hall of Fame and embarking on a partnership to help secure a facility, which will allow the collection and the archives to be housed in an expanded common building.

The Hall of Fame now has 96 inducted honourable members, who have been recognized for their accomplishments and contributions to Canadian motorsports. These men, women and companies have earned the privilege to be a part of the Hall. Categories for induction include: Competitors, Motorsport Builders, Team Members and Significant Contributors. An International category was recently added and Carroll Shelby, Prof. Sid Watkins and Bobby Rahal have been inducted for their contributions to Canadian motorsports.

The annual black-tie induction dinner has become a popular and important event to the Canadian Motorsport industry. In the past, it has hosted such auspicious guest speakers as John Surtees, Dan Gurney, Jacques Villeneuve, Andrew Craig, Ron Fellows, Don Panoz and Brock Yates. The most recent dinner held April, 2011 was attended by nearly 300 people and included a very successful silent auction. The dinner and auction are the primary fund raising activities of the Hall at this time. To continue the upgrading of displays and archive collection, fund raising programs are being developed on both short and long term fronts.

The “First One Hundred” campaign is directed at generating 100 patron donations of $2500 each to establish sufficient funds to hire a full-time General Manager and provide adequate operating capital in our present location. For the long term, a campaign will be focused at supporting the efforts of the Board to ultimately provide for a significant larger facility. This will allow the CMHF to broaden the scope of the collection and its marketing activities. The Canadian Motorsport Heritage Foundation now operates as a not-for-profit charitable institution. In the new millennium we continue to honour and recognize those who have made significant contributions to motorsports in Canada. As funds permit, we will seek out new additions to the collection and continually improve and upgrade our display environment. The Hall of Fame comes under the jurisdiction of the newly formed Heritage Foundation, created by a group of leading international businessmen. The Foundation aims to preserve the collection and exhibits installed in the former Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame, as well as provide visitors with a comprehensive and interactive look at the long and storied history of motor racing in Canada.

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