Indianapolis Motor Speedway President and Chief Operating Officer Joie Chitwood was named a recipient of the SportsBusiness Journal Forty Under 40 Award, a prestigious, national program that identifies and honors the most promising young executives in sports business younger than age 40.
Chitwood and the 39 other winners will be honored at a black-tie banquet Friday, April 3 at the Mandarin Oriental in Miami.
A committee of SportsBusiness Journal editors and writers selects the 40 executives from among hundreds of nominations received each year. Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal and SportsBusiness Daily, the leading print and online national sports business publications, initiated the program in 1999.
"It's a great honor to be included in the company of the talented business leaders who receive this award," Chitwood said. "It's also a testimony to the hard work of every employee of IMS as we continue to fulfill our mission of worldwide leadership in motorsports entertainment."
Chitwood joined the IMS staff as senior vice president, business affairs on Oct. 1, 2002. In December 2004, he was promoted to president and chief operating officer of IMS and oversees daily operations for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, including the Brickyard Crossing Golf Course.
During Chitwood's tenure as president and COO, IMS has continued to grow in all aspects of its business operations, including the addition of the Red Bull Indianapolis GP MotoGP event to the annual schedule in 2008.
Chitwood was one of the first staff members of the Indy Racing League, as the liaison to its teams, and in 2002 he had the honor of serving as Pace Car driver for the Indianapolis 500-Mile Race. His family connection to IMS dates to the late 1930s when his grandfather began competing in the Indianapolis 500.
Before joining the IMS executive staff, Chitwood was vice president and general manager of Raceway Associates, LLC, which oversaw construction of the 1.5-mile Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., from 1999-2002. In 2001, the track began playing host to Indy Racing League- and NASCAR-sanctioned events.
Chitwood is a member of the 2012 Super Bowl bid committee, on the board of trustees for the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America, a member of the advisory committee for the Sports Executive Leadership Conference and an adjunct professor at Marian College in Indianapolis.