The PRI fair: a professional fair and more

by Paul Gohde

Started in 1986 as a trade show for the “grassroots racer,” PRI (Performance Racing Industry) is a three-day event, now held at the Indianapolis Convention Center since its 2013 move from Orlando, Florida. The show attracts over 1,000 manufacturers who showcase their racing products to the approximately 70,000 runners and teams who attend each December.

While the primary reason for the PRI show itself is to bring the latest racing gear to the grassroots racing community, the show also offers sanctioning bodies, racing teams, sponsors and more. an opportunity to reach participants with their latest rules, schedules and leads.

Some highlights of the show:

● Each year PRI hosts an opening breakfast in the morning where a nationally recognized speaker answers questions from the audience. This year’s speakers were Indianapolis Motor Speedway and NTT INDYCAR SERIES owner Roger Penske and IMS President Doug Boles. From a list of topics covered, Penske took the opportunity to remind the crowd that it’s more important than ever to work together in the (motorsport) industry. “I can’t think of a better place to meet than the PRI Show. It is the ideal setting to communicate with the leaders of the race, ”he noted. Penske and Boles discussed issues with IMS and Indycar racing in general, including the desire to host a world-class endurance race there, and possibly bring an F1 race back to the circuit. 16th street. Boles and Penske showed respect for each other, often picking up the other’s dialogue as one paused.

● Another highlight of the day one program was an appearance by drag racing champion John Force and his team Peak at the Chevrolet performance booth. Sixteen-time NHRA champion, Top Fuel driver and daughter of Force Brittany, Force, and teammate Robert Hight, three-time champion Funny Car, addressed the crowd with Jim Campbell, vice president of performance and motorsports at General Motors, moderator. Greg Anderson, the NHRA Pro-Stock champion, who also races for Chevy, spoke to the crowd earlier.

● Sanctioning bodies, such as the World of Outlaws sprint car series and ARCA Menards stock car series, featured large screens, distributing 2022 programs and answering questions from fans. Absent from the ARCA booth is Mark Gundrum, longtime ARCA Vice President of Business and Corporate Development. The Wisconsin native recently announced his retirement from ARCA and will be missed.

● One of the groups that took advantage of the large and race-oriented crowd at the PRI Show was the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum. The museum, built in the infield of the track 50 years ago, is in the process of updating its exhibits to more up-to-date standards, and some are talking about building a new facility. Their exhibit at the PRI featured several winning racers (including Jimmy Clark’s Lotus Ford) and the museum was staffed during the show. Eight levels of membership, as well as various benefits, are available to supporters. For more information on how to join and support their efforts, see

● The PRI Show 2022 will be held from December 8 to 10, still in Indianapolis. It is open to racing suppliers, racing teams, partners and sponsors involved in the sport.

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