CHANDLER, Ariz. (Feb. 21, 2010) – Brett Hewson, of Phoenix, Ariz.., was selected the second NAPA AUTO PARTS Honorary Crew Member of the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series today at the 26th annual NHRA Arizona Nationals.
Hewson, 34, is the shop manager at Greulich's Automotive, in the Ahwatukee section of Phoenix, the No. 7 store of a 10-store chain of automotive repair shops in the area. He's been managing the shop for six years and has been in the automotive business for 15 years.
A race fan "all his life," Hewson races a Super Street car here at Firebird Int'l Raceway, winning national events in three of the last five years competing at this track.
'I'm absolutely delighted," he said of being named the NAPA Honorary Crew Member today. "I guess I was just in the right spot, talking to the right people at the right time and buying the right parts.
"I have always loved NAPA parts and we recently got together with them and now we're installing the majority of the parts that we sell on customer vehicles."
Hewson says he's a big fan of NAPA Funny Car driver Ron Capps. "We had dinner with him on Friday and it was an absolutely wonderful, wonderful experience. I have followed his exploits even before NAPA became a sponsor of his team."
Mike Conroy, District Manager for Phoenix Distribution Center-Company Stores, helped present the honor to Hewson today in the Don Schumacher Racing pit area.
"Greulich's Automotive is a brand-new customer of ours in the Phoenix area," he said. "We've been developing a relationship with these folks for the past few months and we thought it would be a great opportunity for them to see the NAPA relationship and build that bond with the stores and our NAPA family."
As for NAPA's involvement with DSR and Ron Capps for the third NHRA season, "It's a very nice relationship," said Conroy. "It's capitalizing on what we did with NASCAR. Having Ron be so close to our fans and also so close to our customers makes it a really good match."
Hewson's non-wrenching crew-member duties included escorting the NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Funny Car to the staging lanes for the Funny Car eliminations rounds today. He then helped retrieve the car at the end of the track after each pass. Capps ended the day in the quarterfinals.
The side window of the NAPA Dodge sported Hewson's name as the NAPA AUTO PARTS Honorary Crew Member this weekend.
He also met and chatted with the entire NAPA AUTO PARTS Dodge Funny Car crew, was a special guest in the NAPA hospitality area throughout the weekend, received a NAPA team jersey, experienced an up-close-and-personal view of the NAPA crew as the team worked on the car, and enjoyed a private tour of the team transporter and pit area.
NAPA AUTO PARTS Distribution Centers at each NHRA event during the season have different criteria for choosing the persons who are potential NAPA AUTO PARTS Honorary Crew Members.