DOVER, Del. – Chris Economaki, long-time editor of National Speed Sport News and a pioneering racing broadcaster, died Friday morning at age 91. For years, Economaki was one of the most familiar names — and voices — in all forms of motorsports.
“Speed Sport News is something that I read religiously,” Jeff Gordon said Friday at Dover. “Chris did a lot for that newspaper and for motorsports, and he was passionate about all of it. The last time I saw him was earlier this year, and still, that’s all he thought about was racing.
“He cared so much about what was happening in this sport and wanted to make a difference and wanted to get those stories out there. It’s just not that often that you come across somebody that puts their heart and soul and entire life mission into that.”
FOX and SPEED play-by-play announcer Mike Joy put Economaki’s contribution in perspective.
“Chris Economaki became the prototype for all radio and television journalists in his sport,” Joy said. “His depth of knowledge and skilled questioning made network execs understand that auto racing needed specialists to properly cover the sport.
“Chris opened the door for a whole generation of voices you hear today, and we are all indebted to him.”