Do You Have What it Takes to be the Performance Engine Builder of the Year? - Engine Builder Magazine

Do You Have What it Takes to be the Performance Engine Builder of the Year?

Performance engine builders are a dedicated bunch. All they care about is winning – and sometimes they employ “creative” methods to win races. With that in mind, Engine builders of all sizes and types are eligible – and encouraged – to enter the Performance Engine Builder of the Year contest.

“We are excited to be part of this contest because we are racers ourselves,” explains Lake Speed from Driven Racing Oil. “Not to sound cliché, but the DNA of our company is that it was born out of the Joe Gibbs engine shop. We have a passion for racing engines and, way too many times, I think the engine builder is often an underappreciated part of the team – they often get too much of the blame and not enough of the credit for the outcome of the race. This is a great chance to give them some well-deserved credit.”

The Performance Engine Builder of the Year Award will showcase the best example of creativity and innovation, training and education, merchandising and promotion, professional standards and conduct, appearance, solid business management, community involvement, business growth, achievement and victories. The winner will be announced at a special ceremony at this year’s International Motorsports Industry Show in Indianapolis, December 6-8.

“Engine builders can nominate their own businesses, or others can nominate performance engine building businesses,” explains Doug Kaufman, associate publisher/editor of Engine Builder magazine. “The entry process is a simple online procedure: when you make the nomination at, you just need to provide some basic information about the engine builder being nominated and write a short (300-word maximum) essay explaining why that operation should be considered. From there, all entrants will be reviewed and a group of semi-finalists selected. Those semi-finalists will be asked to provide additional information for judging.”

A panel of judges, including Driven representatives, IMIS Officials and Show representatives and the Engine Builder staff, will then select the three finalists and, ultimately, the Performance Engine Builder of the Year Award winner.

“Too many times, the driver and the race day team are the only ones who get to hold the trophy for winning a championship,” says Speed. “The engine builder knows that he was part of that and, while there are some trophies for those guys, frankly, they only win if the whole team wins. This is more of a contest on who is the best engine shop, determined by a variety of factors. As sponsor, we like the idea of this competition. Frankly, race engine builders are competitive and they want to see their engines win. We look forward to seeing how competitive they can be in battling for this award, as well.”

The shop judged as the Performance Engine Builder of the Year will receive the Performance Engine Builder of the Year Award trophy, a check for $1,500, an Apple iPad, a trip for two (two nights lodging at the Indianapolis Hyatt) to the upcoming IMIS in Indianapolis, IN and a feature story on the business in the January 2013 issue of Engine Builder’s High Performance Buyers Guide, as well as other prizes from sponsors.

Second- and third-place finalists will receive a prize from sponsors, a Kindle Fire, as well as special recognition in the January 2013 issue of Engine Builder’s High Performance Buyers Guide.

“We’re looking forward to handing the winner a check and the award and saying ‘Awesome job. Way to fight the fight,’” says Driven’s Speed. “Personally, I think the race engine builder needs this. With all the obstacles they face, these guys have been kicked around for a long time. The simple fact of the matter is, though, that nobody is going to cross that finish line without the expertise of a great engine builder.”

Nominations will be accepted through September 30, 2012. More information, complete contest rules and the nomination form are available at

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