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Go Go Speed Racer



    Go Go Speed Racer
    James Chippendale sits down with Eddie Gossage at Babe's.

    For 30 years now NASCAR has been a passion for Eddie Gossage, president and general manager at Texas Motor Speedway.

    We sat down with Gossage at Babe's  in Roanoke to talk food, family and racing.

    Gossage caught the racing bug at a young age while growing up in Nashville, Tenn., thanks to a persistent younger brother.

    "I was 16 and my little brother was a big Evil Knievel fan. He wanted to go out to Nashville Speedway … some guy was jumping 11 cars and so he begged me to take him because I had a drivers license," said Gossage. "I took him. We had to sit through all the weekly racing to get to the motorcycle jumping of the night -- and I loved the races."

    Last Call with Eddie Gossage

    [DFW] Last Call with Eddie Gossage
    James Chippendale talks with Texas Motor Speedway president Eddie Gossage.
    (Published Thursday, July 8, 2010)

    Gossage was hooked.  The next week he went back to the track for just the races.

    Before moving to Texas, Gossage began his career in motorsports in 1980 as public relations director for the Nashville International Raceway.

    He has since worked at The Bristol Motor Speedway in Tennessee, with the Miller Brewing Company, and as vice president of public relations for Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte, N.C.

    Since it's inception nearly 15 years ago, Gossage has been steering the ship at TMS.

    "The great blessing in my life is Bruton Smith [the owner of Speedway Motorsports and several tracks] called me one day and said, 'We need to go build a speedway somewhere,'" said Gossage, "I said, 'I need a little more direction than that.' He said, 'The only direction I've got for you is to go west young man -- some place west of the Mississippi.'"

    And shortly thereafter, Texas Motor Speedway was born.

    Gossage, ever the good ambassador for NASCAR, is proud of the sport and loves to promote the drivers, the fans and everything in between.

    "I'm proud of our sport. A guy catches a pass for four yards across the middle and starts thumping his chest, getting up like he did something. My god! You are paid millions of dollars a year. You are supposed to get that pass. Don't act the fool.  I think it's so foolish to act like that -- our guys don't do that," said Gossage.

    Gossage also loves the sport of racing having a home in Texas.

    "The people of Dallas-Fort Worth are just like the people who drive those race cars," said Gossage. "Good, All-American, deep-rooted common folk, you know? They can identify with what our guys do for a living."

    Gossage's next big race weekend is just around the corner.  Texas Motor Speedway hosts NASCAR's Samsung 500 on Sunday, April 5.