Commemorating the 65th Anniversary of the founding of Watkins Glen International

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  • 11 / Mar / 2014
  • 13 / Mar / 2014
  • 13 / Mar / 2014

Resolution Details

Law Section:
Resolutions, Legislative



LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION commemorating the 65th Anniversary of the found-
ing of Watkins Glen International

WHEREAS, It is the sense of this Legislative Body that the quality and
character of life in the State of New York has been greatly enhanced by
the presence of certain extraordinary recreational facilities; and
WHEREAS, Attendant to such concerns, and in full accord with its long-
standing traditions, this Legislative Body is justly proud to commem-
orate the 65th Anniversary of the founding of Watkins Glen Interna-
tional; and
WHEREAS, On October 2, 1948,Watkins Glen International's incredible
history began with its inaugural race, "The Day They Stopped the
Trains"; this fulfilled founder, Cameron Argetsinger's dream of bringing
European style competition to the village where he spent his summer
vacations; and
WHEREAS, This event was the first road race in the United States after
World War II, and laid the foundation for one of the country's premier
racing facilities; and
WHEREAS, For five years, the top names in American sports car racing
visited The Glen and huge crowds came out to watch them race; after
using a temporary track, a new 2.3-mile permanent circuit was built in
1956; the following year, The Glen hosted its first professional race, a
NASCAR event, won by Buck Baker over Fireball Roberts; and
WHEREAS, True international competition began in 1958, with the
running of a Formula Libre race; in 1961, the stars of Formula 1 were
all present for the Inaugural Watkins Glen U.S. Grand Prix, which would
become a fall tradition at the circuit through 1980; Innes Ireland won
the inaugural running, with great drivers such as Clark, Hill, Stewart,
Lauda, Fittipaldi and Hunt among the winners of later Grand Prix; and
WHEREAS, In 1986, NASCAR returned to Watkins Glen International with
the NASCAR Winston Cup series, featuring Tim Richmond's triumphant
return; and
WHEREAS, This event, now called the NASCAR Sprint Cup series, has
returned to The Glen on the same weekend for the past 22 years, and has
featured some of the biggest names in auto racing; this annual competi-
tion has grown to become the largest weekend sporting event in New York
State; and
WHEREAS, In 1997, International Speedway Corporation became sole owner
of the historic road course, purchasing the remaining interests of Major
benefactor, Corning Incorporated; this sale completed Corning's mission
of refurbishing the facility while revitalizing the Southern Finger
Lakes Region; and
WHEREAS, Watkins Glen International has undergone many changes over
the years; the addition of the Inner Loop has increased the length of
the long course to 3.4 miles and the short course to 2.45 miles; in
2005, The Glen underwent many major capital improvements; these new
turns have enhanced competition while adding quality spectator viewing
for racing fans; and
WHEREAS, The Glen cemented its distinction as North America's fastest
road course when Davy Jones won the pole for the Camel Continental IX
with a fast lap of 150.334 mph on the reconfigured 2.45 mile short
course; and
WHEREAS, Today, this remarkable institution continues to hold many
popular events including The Sahlen's Six Hour IMSA sports car race, the
SCCA National Competition, the Cheez-It 355 at The Glen NASCAR race in
August, Glenora Wine Cellars US Vintage Grand Prix, and the Ferrari
Challenge; and

WHEREAS, More than 150 days of BMW, Porsche, Ferrari, Audi, Mazda and
various other club event days from all over the eastern seaboard are
presented each year; and
WHEREAS, As a world-renowned premier racing venue, Watkins Glen Inter-
national brings over $200 million in annual economic activity to the
Southern Finger Lakes region, including the creation of thousands of
jobs from track operation and maintenance on site, to lodging, dining,
shopping and entertainment spending by its fans; and
WHEREAS, The Glen's contributions to its community go beyond motors-
ports; it proudly hosts the Finger Lakes Beer Festival, as well as the
Finger Lakes Wine Festival, now in its 18th year, which provides a
unique opportunity for people to enjoy products by New York wineries
from every corner of the State; and
WHEREAS, Throughout its 65 year history, Watkins Glen International
has embodied more than giant crowds and great speed; the racing communi-
ty continues to return year after year to witness its historic moments
and unique charms that have made this place one of the premier motors-
ports facilities in the world; and
WHEREAS, It is the custom of this Legislative Body to recognize and
take note of certain celebrated recreational institutions and to bring
such institutions to the attention of the people of this State that it
strives to serve; now, therefore, be it
RESOLVED, That this Legislative Body pause in its deliberations to
commemorate the 65th Anniversary of the founding of Watkins Glen Inter-
national; and be it further
RESOLVED, That a copy of this Resolution, suitably engrossed, be tran-
smitted to Watkins Glen International.


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