Special Fred Lorenzen Exhibit Debuts
ELMHURST, Ill. — One of NASCAR racing’s first superstars, Fred Lorenzen is being honored by his hometown of Elmhurst as the Elmhurst Historical Museum presents the “On the Road to Glory” exhibit, which honors and details Lorenzen’s racing career.
The display, which will be open to the public until May 19, is a variety of photos, story boards and memorabilia, which document Lorenzen’s racing accomplishments from his days on local Chicago area short tracks through his NASCAR career, which included 26 victories in a 158 races and 33 pole position awards. Lorenzen was one of NASCAR’s hottest drivers in the 1960s, becoming the first NASCAR racer to win more than $100,000 in a single season (1963) and winning the Daytona 500 (1965).
The final race of his NASCAR career took place in 1972. Retiring from racing, Lorenzen became a successful real estate broker, working out of his office near his old home in Elmhurst.
“He is truly one of the pioneers of this sport,” commented Scott Paddock of the Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, which is a sponsor of the exhibit. “He deserves much of the credit for where it (NASCAR racing) is today. When you think of Fred Lorenzen and his career, it’s not just the success on the race track, but the impact he had on countless lives around the country.”
Paddock was one of a number of special guests that were on hand for an opening reception for the exhibit, which was held on Jan. 31. Ed Clark of the Atlanta Motor Speedway and Elmhurst Mayor Scott Levin were also on hand.
Lorenzen is 78 and lives in an assisted-living facility near Elmhurst. His children, daughter, Amanda Lorenzen Gardstrom, and son, Chris, are both working hard to get their father elected into NASCAR’s Hall of Fame. Lorenzen was named one of NASCAR’s top 50 drivers in 1998.
For more information about the exhibit, call (630) 833-1457 or go to elmhursthistory.org.