Nothing was going to stop Denny Fox from attending the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Chicagoland Speedway on Saturday – not even a family wedding. That’s because Fox was selected by NAPA to be the Honorary Pit Crew Member for the 400.

Dennis Fox

Fox, of Evergreen Park, Ill., has a NAPA AutoCare Center called Denny’s Service Center. He employs three people and has been aligned with NAPA since 1992. He credits NAPA for being the biggest help in growing his business. 

“Number one, NAPA has a great salesman in Michael Waltrip, said Fox. “He helps put it out there where the average person can understand what he is talking about.

“When it comes to the parts, I don’t have any problems with them especially with the nationwide warranty. I can tell my customers that if they are on vacation in Michigan and they run into a problem with a part that I have put on their car, it is covered. They can go to any NAPA AutoCare Center and they’ll do the work for nothing. That’s impressive.”

Fox has followed NASCAR Sprint Cup racing since 1961 when he was a fan of Cal Yarborough. He has traveled to several venues like Daytona and Michigan International Speedways. But it’s the Chicagoland Speedway that has him coming to the races since the track opened back in 2001. He found out less than a month ago that he was being chosen as an honorary pit crew member and was excited.

“When you have the chance to look at 43 of the most fine-tuned vehicles with the 43 best drivers in the world, it is awesome,” added Fox. “Then to find out that NAPA picked me, I was shocked. I almost wet my pants to be honest with you.

“I was supposed to go to a family wedding but I told them I was going to the race to cheer on Michael and the NAPA Racing team.”

Fox’s day at Chicagoland Speedway started off with a tailgating party with some friends. Then he was off to the NAPA Race Day Experience where Fox was honored by driver Michael Waltrip during his hospitality appearance. The two-time Daytona 500 champion presented him with an official NAPA Racing crew shirt. After that, he and his guest Sherrie Winiarski were transported by golf cart to the NASCAR Sprint Cup garage. They enjoyed dinner with the team and an exclusive trip onto pit road for a tour by Michael Waltrip Racing’s Jarian Kerekes. While on the starting grid, they had their picture taken with Waltrip by Fox’s official Honorary Pit Crew Member decal on the No. 55 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota.

“My decal is gorgeous,” smiled Fox. “I could never afford a decal on a NASCAR like that. Thanks to NAPA, I have one now.”

This season at 18 NASCAR Sprint Cup events where NAPA is hosting its popular Race Day Experience, a guest will be chosen based on different criteria determined by the NAPA management from that region. The Honorary Pit Crew Member program will take place at upcoming hospitality events at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (July 26), Watkins Glen International (August 9), Michigan International Speedway (August 16), Bristol Motor Speedway (August 22), Atlanta Motor Speedway (September 6), Richmond International Raceway (September 12), Kansas Speedway (October 4), Texas Motor Speedway (November 8) and Homestead-Miami Speedway (November 22).