Tommy Kendall

Last updated
Tommy Kendall
Tommy Kendall Pontiac G8 Rolex 24 2008.jpg
Born (1966-10-17) October 17, 1966 (age 53)
Santa Monica, California
Awards2015 inductee in the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America [1]
NASCAR Cup Series career
14 races run over 10 years
Best finish47th (1990)
First race 1987 Winston Western 500 (Riverside)
Last race 1998 The Bud At The Glen (Watkins Glen)
WinsTop tens Poles
010
NASCAR Xfinity Series career
1 race run over 1 year
Best finish85th (1990
First race 1990 NE Chevy 250 (Loudon
WinsTop tens Poles
000
24 Hours of Le Mans career
Years2000, 2013
Teams Konrad Motorsport, SRT Motorsports
Best finish14th

Tommy Kendall (born October 17, 1966) is an American race car driver and television broadcaster. He is best known for his IMSA GT Championship and SCCA Trans-Am Series career.

Contents

Racing career

Son of race driver Charles Kendall, Kendall began his racing career competing at the IMSA GT Championship. He drove a Mazda RX-7 in the GTU category while studying and by the time he completed his studies, he took the 1986 and 1987 championships. Later he won three other titles in the same car, which he still owns.[ citation needed ]

He later dominated the SCCA Trans-Am Series in the 1990s, scoring four series championships. His greatest year came in 1997, when he won 11 races in a row out of the 13 on the schecule—almost a perfect season. During this time, Kendall was also honored by representing the series for six IROC seasons.

He ran in fourteen NASCAR Cup Series races between 1987 and 1998. He raced primarily only on road courses as a road course ringer, and scored one Top-10 finish. He nearly won the 1991 Banquet Frozen Foods 300K at Sears Point Raceway, in which he led 12 laps before cutting a tire with two laps to go following a late-race collision with Mark Martin. The two drivers, who were briefly Roush-Fenway Racing teammates in Trans-Am, would not speak about the incident for years until they rehashed their late-race collision on Martin's podcast, twenty years later. [2]

While competing in Winston Cup as a ringer, Kendall had a single start in the NASCAR Busch Series. Kendall also had one start with Dick Johnson Racing at the 1996 AMP Bathurst 1000 in Australia co-driving with Steven Johnson, the son of team boss Dick Johnson. Johnson and Kendall finished 8th in their Ford EF Falcon. [3] Of the American drivers who have competed in the Bathurst 1000 since the race moved to Bathurst in 1963 including three time Indianapolis 500 winner Johnny Rutherford, Janet Guthrie (the first woman to ever qualify for the Indy 500 in 1977), Dick Barbour, Sam Posey, Bob Tullius, John Andretti and Scott Pruett, Kendall holds the distinction of being the first one to have ever finished the race (Pruett in his only start would finish 11th the next year at Bathurst [4] ).

On June 30, 1991, Kendall suffered serious leg injuries at Watkins Glen when a mechanical failure caused his Intrepid RM-1 IMSA GTP car to leave the track and crash head-on into a tire wall. This occurred along the same area of track where J. D. McDuffie of NASCAR Winston Cup fame was killed only a month later, and both crashes led to the addition of a bus stop chicane on the backstretch. Kendall spoke of this incident during Episode 4, Season 2 of the Speed Channel series, Setup as a "crossroads in his racing career." He returned to racing close to a year later in June 1992. He also discussed his accident on Athlete 360 , a sports medicine television show hosted by Mark Adickes.

Broadcasting career

In the 2000s Kendall became a television analyst for the Champ Car series. He is also the host of the Speed Test Drive promotional television series where he and another professional race car driver drive a new vehicle on a race course while being able to remotely talk to each other and offer their positive thoughts on the car.

In 2007 and 2008, Kendall was one of the hosts of the show Setup on SpeedTV.

On July 15, 2012, Kendall revealed on SpeedTV's WindTunnel program that he would be returning to the cockpit as one of four full-time drivers in a factory-backed Dodge Viper effort competing in the American Le Mans Series.

On September 22, 2013, Kendall's new show, Driven - A Race Without Boundaries, premiered on Fox Sports 1. It also stars Rhys Millen and is hosted by Tiff Needell.

Personal life

Kendall was raised in the city of La Cañada Flintridge, California and is a 1984 graduate of La Cañada High School.

Kendall earned a degree in economics from UCLA and to this day maintains an avid interest in business.[ citation needed ]

Hall of Fame

In 2015, he was inducted in the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America. [1]

Motorsports career results

NASCAR

(key) (Bold - Pole position awarded by qualifying time. Italics - Pole position earned by points standings or practice time. * – Most laps led.)

Winston Cup Series

NASCAR Winston Cup Series results
YearTeamNo.Make123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930313233NWCCPts
1987 Spears Motorsports 76 Buick DAY CAR RCH ATL DAR NWS BRI MAR TAL CLT DOV POC RSD MCH DAY POC TAL GLN MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR NWS CLT CAR RSD
38
ATL 107th0
1988 DAY RCH CAR ATL DAR BRI NWS MAR TAL CLT DOV RSD
18
POC MCH DAY POC TAL GLN MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR CLT NWS CAR PHO ATL 64th114
1989 Hendrick Motorsports 18 Chevy DAY CAR ATL RCH DAR BRI NWS MAR TAL CLT DOV SON POC MCH DAY POC TAL GLN
27
MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR CLT NWS CAR PHO ATL NA0
1990 Reno Enterprises 40 Chevy DAY RCH CAR ATL DAR BRI NWS MAR TAL CLT DOV SON
38
POC MCH DAY POC TAL GLN
8
MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR NWS
DNQ
CLT
DNQ
CAR
26
PHO ATL 46th281
1991 Team SABCO 42 Pontiac DAY RCH CAR ATL DAR BRI NWS MAR TAL CLT DOV SON
18
POC MCH DAY POC TAL GLN MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR NWS CLT CAR PHO ATL 63rd114
1992 Jimmy Means Racing 52 Pontiac DAY CAR RCH ATL DAR BRI NWS MAR TAL CLT DOV SON
13
POC MCH DAY POC TAL GLN MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR NWS CLT CAR PHO ATL 66th124
1993 AK Racing 7 Ford DAY CAR RCH ATL DAR BRI NWS MAR TAL SON
22
CLT DOV POC MCH DAY NHA POC TAL GLN
25
MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR NWS CLT CAR PHO ATL 54th185
1994 Junior Johnson & Associates 27 Ford DAY CAR RCH ATL DAR BRI NWS MAR TAL SON CLT DOV POC MCH DAY NHA POC TAL IND GLN
22
MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR NWS CLT CAR PHO ATL 63rd97
1996 Elliott-Hardy Racing 94 Ford DAY CAR RCH ATL DAR BRI NWS MAR TAL SON
28
CLT DOV POC MCH DAY NHA POC TAL IND GLN MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR NWS CLT CAR PHO ATL 60th84
1998 Team SABCO 46 Chevy DAY CAR LVS ATL DAR BRI TEX MAR TAL CAL CLT DOV RCH MCH POC SON
DNQ
NHA POC IND GLN
17
MCH BRI NHA DAR RCH DOV MAR CLT TAL DAY PHO CAR ATL 56th232
LJ Racing 91 Chevy SON
16

Busch Series

NASCAR Busch Series results
YearTeamNo.Make12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031NBSCPts
1990 Reno Enterprises 40 Chevy DAY RCH CAR MAR HCY DAR BRI LAN SBO NZH HCY CLT DOV ROU VOL MYB OXF NHA SBO DUB IRP ROU BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR CLT NHA
15
CAR MAR 85th118

24 Hours of Le Mans results

YearTeamCo-DriversCarClassLapsPos.Class
Pos.
2000 Flag of Germany.svg Konrad Motorsport Flag of the United States.svg Charles Slater
Flag of Germany.svg Jürgen von Gartzen
Porsche 911 GT2 GTS31714th7th
2013 Flag of the United States.svg SRT Motorsports Flag of the United States.svg Jonathan Bomarito
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Kuno Wittmer
SRT Viper GTS-R GTE
Pro
30131st9th

Bathurst 1000 result

YearTeamCo-DriversCarClassLapsPos.Class
Pos.
1996 Flag of Australia (converted).svg Shell FAI Racing Flag of Australia (converted).svg Steven Johnson Ford EF Falcon 1588th8th

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References

  1. 1 2 Tommy Kendall at the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America
  2. "The Mark Martin Podcast - Episode 9 Tommy Kendall". Stitcher Radio . July 19, 2018. Retrieved February 7, 2020.
  3. NATSOFT Race Result Archived 2007-12-28 at the Wayback Machine
  4. 1997 Primus 1000 Classic result [ permanent dead link ]