Like Tree0Likes

32 year, 3 months and 11 days at Penske Racing - I'M RETIRED!!!

Old 12-23-2010, 01:07 PM
Neno the mind boggler
VIP Member
Trade Score: (1)
glassdave's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: toledo oh
My Boats: Batboat, 38 Scarab Thunder, 16 Sidewinder, 27 Magnum
Posts: 12,667

Originally Posted by SS930 View Post
Where did you here that?

Congrats Chuck!
heer? . . . . lol fixed (i think)
Throttles- Cleveland Construction 377 Talon
08 OPA Class 1 National Champion
08 Class 1 Geico Triple Crown Champion
08 OPA High Points Champion
10 OPA Class 1 National Champion ( happy now Ed! )
glassdave is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 01:28 PM
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Arlington Tx
Posts: 9,373

Originally Posted by C_Spray View Post
Our company's relationship with our major sponsor (Marlboro) has come to an end after 20 years. As a result, all of the assets of the subsidiary company that I have been running for Penske Racing (Racing Experience, Inc.) are being moved to the main shop in Mooresville, North Carolina. Unfortunately, we have also had to lay off the entire staff. In my case, I have elected to accept a severance package and continue my involvement with Penske Racing as a part-time contractor for a small program to be run by Racing Experience, Inc. in 2011.

This brings to an end more than 32 years of full-time employment with Roger Penske and Penske Racing. In that time, I have served in every capacity from truck driver and assistant mechanic to Vice President. I have done every job in the place, from sweeping the floors to pit stops to building cars to running the company. I have been part of over 80 Indy Car race wins, countless Pole positions, 8 Indianapolis 500 wins and 4 CART National Championships. I have worked with Mario Andretti, Bobby Unser, Rick Mears, Al Unser, Emerson Fittipaldi, Al Unser Jr, Kevin Cogan, Bill Alsup, Andre Ribiero, Paul Tracy, Scott Sharp, and even an unforgettable guest appearance by Ayrton Senna. All of these guys were incredible athletes and consummate professionals, but it was the guys on the team who really blew me away over the years. The mechanics, support members and engineers collectively were the most amazing group of people that I have ever met. Their dedication, skills, intelligence and perseverance in the face of situations that the rest of us would consider to be insurmountable or even frightening was something to see. Many of these people remain lifelong friends to this day, and I carry and undying respect for all of them. Short of war, there not many endeavors that push people to their limits like motor racing, particularly in the CART era from the late 70's through the late 90's. I am so lucky to have been able to experience these events and these people. What a great ride.

It's a strange feeling to realize that my time is largely my own now. With all the travelling, commitments, responsibilities and planning duties that I've carried with me every day for so long, I have to get used to enjoying time for myself now. I certainly don't regret my decision, but I have no doubt that it will take some time to adapt. I can tell you all this much right now, though: You're going to see A LOT MORE of me on the water in the future.

Merry Christmas, everyone!
Dam Chuck I didn't know you worked for Penske. Congrats on a great career! Is that you on the right in the top pic?
Catmando is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 01:50 PM
VIP Member
VIP Member
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Aspen, CO
My Boats: 2007 37' Active Thunder SOLD
Posts: 3,203

Congrats Chuck Hope to see you at the kick off party next month.
ACTIVESHACK is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 02:25 PM
dkwestern's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Lake St. Clair
My Boats: 33' Powerplay triple 2.5's
Posts: 2,973

dkwestern is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 02:31 PM
Diamond Member #001
Charter Member
Thread Starter
Trade Score: (2)
C_Spray's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Coastal North Carolina
My Boats: 2000 Formula 382 with Innovation 600's
Posts: 4,789

Thanks for all the kind wishes - they will help ease the transition.

Craig - You're right, there were lots of memorable (good and bad) moments. Picking the top one is like trying to pick your favorite dessert.

Linda Vaughn remembering my name the second time she met me.
Getting to see this amazing country while driving trucks coast-to-coast. (Hint: Watch the animated movie "Cars".)
Surviving my first pit stop, unscathed and with no mistakes.
The first time that the car I was assigned to won a race (Mario Andretti, Michigan 1980).
The fire in Rick Mears' pit in the 1981 Indy 500.
The GIGANTIC fire in the pit right behind us two months later at Michigan. 280 gallons of methanol.
Rick's car locking up solid with a broken gearbox as we pushed it back to the garage from Victory Circle at Watkins Glen in 1981, after winning the race.
Meeting Jackie Stewart, Stirling Moss, and tons of other legends of the sport.
Winning the lots of races and CART Championship with Rick Mears in 1981 and 1982.
Leading every lap of the first two races in 1982.
Breaking the track record by SEVEN miles per hour at Indy in 1982. On the first day of practice.
Winning the Pocono 500 by three laps in 1982.
Getting a stainless Rolex from Rick for the 1982 Championship.
Flying to England for two weeks every fall to help build the first "next year" car. And dreadful British food.
Heather Locklear in the pits at Cleveland in 1983.
Witnessing Rick Mears' crippling crash at Sanair in 1984. The worst feeling ever.
My first Lear Jet ride with RP in 1984.
Starting up the very first Ilmor engine of any type in 1984.
Winning the 1985 Indianapolis 500 in my first year as a Chief Mechanic, in only my third race in that role. (Anyone remember Danny Sullivan's "Spin-and-win"?)
Setting a Pit Stop Competition record that stood for 14 years at the 1985 Indy 500.
The GOLD Rolex that AJ Foyt's family presented me for the 1985 500. Still on my wrist to this day.
Finding out that AJ is actually a really cool and friendly guy as long as you keep the TV cameras away.
Christy Brinkley (then Mrs. Billy Joel) in the pits at the Meadowlands in 1986.
"Big Al" Unser winning the 1987 Indy 500 with a year-old car that we had re-activated from show car duty 12 days earlier.
Winning the 1988 CART Championship going away, with one race still left, after coming into the fourth race of the season with zero points. We won nine poles, five races and set 10 track records in the process.
Roger meeting me late at night at the Reading airport to offer me the Team Managers position in late 1988.
..and this was only the first ten years...
Attached Thumbnails
32 year, 3 months and 11 days at Penske Racing - I'M RETIRED!!!-1980_002.jpg   32 year, 3 months and 11 days at Penske Racing - I'M RETIRED!!!-1981_105.jpg   32 year, 3 months and 11 days at Penske Racing - I'M RETIRED!!!-1981_151.jpg  

32 year, 3 months and 11 days at Penske Racing - I'M RETIRED!!!-1982_075.jpg   32 year, 3 months and 11 days at Penske Racing - I'M RETIRED!!!-ilmor-chevy-88a.jpg  
Retired! Boating full-time now.

Last edited by C_Spray; 12-23-2010 at 02:51 PM.
C_Spray is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 03:32 PM
Airpacker's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Aurora Ontario
My Boats: little cat...BIG MOTOR
Posts: 4,008

Congrats on making it.

WAY cool career memories Chuck. Congrats on starting at the bottom and rising to the top with hard work and integrity.

Now move to Marco Island and go boatin with BTB. Apparently its something retired workaholics are pretty good at. Maybe you can even work some magic on the big Nortech and set some rattle motor records
Airpacker is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 03:39 PM
Platinum Member
Platinum Member
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,254

Like everyone else has said, congratulations on your retirement from Roger Penske Racing after 32 years. I was also surprised to see, what you did for a living. I retired 3 years ago after 37 years and I am more busier now then when I was working. My mother is 85 and a widow, my mother in-law is 81 and a widow, my wife has Osteoarthritis and had both knee's replaced in the last two years, my son bought a fix up home and between taking the ladies to the doctors on a regular basis and doing chores for them. I am busier now then ever and love doing whatever I can for them. I am never bored and hope that your retirement will be just a gratifying for you as mine has been for me.
AB From Windsor is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 04:34 PM
Charter Member
Charter Member
Trade Score: (1)
Ted G's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Edgerock Baby!!
My Boats: Marlago 35 FS, 18 Neptune CC
Posts: 7,661

Congrats Chuck, enjoy your life (a little more than the usual) !
Chesapeake Bay Powerboat Association
Ted G is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 04:37 PM
Platinum Member
Comanche3Six's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 9,273

Enjoy your life to the fullest! Best wishes!
Comanche3Six is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 12-23-2010, 05:01 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 863

Originally Posted by C_Spray View Post
Starting up the very first Ilmor engine of any type in 1984.
Not many people can say that!! Man you outta write a book. I'd buy it for sure!!
ILMORdude is offline  
Reply With Quote

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:56 AM.

Copyright 2011 OffShoreOnly. All rights reserved.