ARCA's Bobby Watson inducted into Kentucky Motorsports Hall of Fame in Owensboro

ARCA's Bobby Watson inducted into Kentucky Motorsports Hall of Fame in Owensboro

(OWENSBORO, Ky. - October 28, 2013) - ARCA Racing Series winner Bobby Watson was inducted into the Kentucky Motorsports Hall of Fame Saturday night at the Owensboro Museum of Science and History's Speedzuem in Owensboro, Kentucky.

NASCAR's Harry Ranier, who assembled one of the sport's original super teams, was posthumously inducted also during the ceremony.

The Kentucky Motorsports Hall of Fame honors Bluegrass state residents for outstanding accomplishment in all forms of motorsports.

Watson, a Louisville, Kentucky native who eventually relocated to Prestonsburg, Kentucky, won 20 ARCA Racing Series events and 18 pole awards over a 25-year career that included two runner-up championship points finishes. watsoncarshotno8.jpg

Watson won on a wide variety of ARCA tracks including his first at Salem Speedway in June 3, 1962. His next ARCA win came at at his hometown Fairgrounds Motor Speedway in Louisville on August 15, 1964 where he won a grueling 500-lapper.

He also won a 500-lap race at Bristol Motor Speedway in November of 1968.

Watson also holds the distinction of winning the first and only ARCA race at Pocono Raceway in 1969, which was held on the three-quarter-mile oval that once existed inside the 2.5-mile triangular course.

watsonvl.jpgWatson also won at Toledo Speedway, Winchester Speedway, Salyersville Speedway, Flat Rock Speedway, Lorain County Speedway and Tri-County Speedway. His final ARCA victory came at Mt. Clemens Speedway in Mt. Clemens, Michigan in 1974.

He also finished second in national championship points on two occasions, once to Benny Parsons in 1969 and again to Ron Hutcherson in 1972.

Ranier was a Prestonsburg native who cashed out of the coal business and established an organization that won 24 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races in the ‘70's and 80's with drivers Cale Yarborough, Bobby and Davey Allison and Benny Parsons. Watson also drove for Ranier.

Other members of the 2013 class inducted Saturday included two-time IHRA Pro Stock drag racing champion Billy Huff of Shepherdsville, Kentucky along with his father Sherrill Huff; former NHRA world champion Kenny Cook of Louisville, two-time tractor pulling champ Allen Gaines of Georgetown and former drag racing standout and championship truck puller Jim Lyons of Louisville.

Established in 2008, the Hall of Fame's past inductees include three-time NASCAR champion and ARCA winner Darrell Waltrip (Owensboro), three-time NHRA champion Darrell Alderman (Morehead), 1985 Indy 500 winner and ARCA veteran Danny Sullivan (Louisville) and former NASCAR crew chief Harry Hyde (Louisville).

In 2013, the organization established a permanent home inside the Speedzuem, a section of the Owensboro Museum of Science and History.