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Chris Economaki: 5 Little-Known Facts About the Voice of Motor Sports
Posted By Patrick Kiger On October 2, 2012 @ 3:19 am In Legacy | Comments Disabled
During the Great Depression, automobile racers used to hold meets on a dirt track in Hoboken, N.J., that originally had been built for horses. A young boy named Chris Economaki, born in Brooklyn to a Greek immigrant father and the great-niece of Confederate General Robert E. Lee, lived nearby, and when he heard the roar of the engines, he couldn’t resist their siren song. Economaki didn’t have any money to buy a ticket, so he climbed over the fence to watch the races. What he saw gave him such a thrill that he spent the rest of his life telling other people about it.
Economaki, who died on Sept. 28 in New Jersey at age 91 , went on to become motor sports’ version of Howard Cosell and Red Smith, rolled into one. For 60 years, he was the editor and publisher of auto racing’s most important publication, National Speed Sport News , but he reached an even wider audience as an announcer for ABC, CBS and ESPN, where his distinctively high-pitched elocution became associated in viewers’ minds with the thrills and danger of auto racing. Here’s Economaki doing a stand-up at the 1965 Sebring 12-hour Grand Prix:
Here are some things that you might not know about the dean of motor sports journalism.
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URL to article: http://blog.aarp.org/2012/10/02/chris-economaki-5-little-known-facts-about-the-voice-of-motor-sports/
URLs in this post:
 died on Sept. 28 in New Jersey at age 91: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/29/sports/chris-economaki-rumbling-voice-of-auto-racing-dies-at-91.html
 National Speed Sport News: http://www.nationalspeedsportnews.com/
 Image: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vPEy5NEXxo4
 he began selling them at the Ho-Ho-Kus Speedway: http://www.motortrend.com/features/auto_news/2012/1209_in_memoriam_chris_economaki/#ixzz287h7cs9a
 he recalled in an oral history: http://books.google.com/books?id=e9JB3ax1iPgC&pg=PA14&lpg=PA14&dq=chris+economaki&source=bl&ots=SO6ptOXAM7&sig=onF6Rv7xrIwfOxNurW_Of7dKgeQ&hl=en&sa=X&ei=zgBqUPWAB8mzyQGH1oHYCA&ved=0CD0Q6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=chris%20economaki&f=false
 Sports Illustrated article: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/tim_tuttle/09/28/Chris-Economaki-obituary/index.html?eref=sircrc
 2006 TV interview: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HrOob6F7XWo
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