Welcome to the EMPA

Eastern Motorsport Press Association

Hall of Fame
Convention Photos
Benefits of EMPA
Contest Rules
How To Join EMPA



From the desk of Ron Hedger, EMPA President



We’re pleased to report that the planning process for the annual convention is moving ahead steadily, with the awards nomination meeting set for mid-October. If you have any names to suggest for our traditional awards – Hall of Fame, Newsmaker, Northeast and National Driver of the Year, Young Gun, Spirit of the Sport, Service, Ace Lane, Jim Hunter - please send your nomination and a brief supporting statement to any board member prior to the October 16th meeting.  After the meeting, the written ballot will be assembled and mailed to each member. Please read and consider the bios/summary of accomplishments for the nominees, especially those from outside your normal sphere of exposure, before voting.


In other convention related news, NASCAR’s Kerry Tharp has confirmed that the sanctioning body will return as sponsor of the Saturday lunch and the NASCAR Hall of Fame banquet. Their support is much appreciated. We expect NASCAR’s Tim Southers to return with his usual interesting presentation.
And Kate Guerra at IndyCar has confirmed they will continue their sponsorship of Sunday breakfast, for which we are grateful. Kate is a welcome addition to the Saturday press conference schedule and al-ways brings interesting personalities from their segment of the sport to take questions from the membership.
Don’t forget to mark the day after New Year’s as the start of the convention, which will again be held at the Crowne Plaza in King of Prussia/Valley Forge, PA., just off the Pennsylvania Turnpike near the huge King of Prussia Mall. As always, you must be a current member to attend and/or enter the various contests associated with the convention.
LEGAL TOPICS: If you have topics you think should be discussed at the annual legal seminar, please forward them to me so we can give our expert, Ricky Yetter, ample time to consider the fine points of the issue prior to the Saturday afternoon seminar. This has proven to be one of our most popular programs.


Writing contest chairman Dino Oberto has completed the 2014 rules, which are listed below. Please note the earlier deadline brought about by the early January convention date and last year’s increase in entries, which precipitated a request by the judge for more time to review the submissions. We thank Pocono Raceway, as always, for their ongoing support of this contest.


ATTENTION: Deadline Will Not Be Extended!
Entrants are responsible to enter their articles in accordance with the contest rules. Incorrect entries will not be judged and the judge’s decisions are final.
1. You must be a 2015 EMPA member in good standing by November 1, 2014, to enter.
2. All submissions must have been published in print from November 1, 2013, through October 31, 2014.
3. All entries must have a byline. Joint bylines are not permitted.
4. A total of (5) five entries will be allowed. No article may be entered in more than one category.

5. Deadline- must be postmarked by November 1, 2014. NO EXCEPTIONS.

Column: This is the writer’s opinion about a specific racing-related issue or topic. Judging based on style, writing quality, originality and appeal.
Feature: A single story that deals with some aspect of motorsports. Judging will be on human interest, reader interest, and quality of writing and thoroughness of reporting.  No series, no sidebars and no submissions focusing exclusively on a person or persons. (no personality profiles).
News: A story of immediate news development that occurred yesterday or the next closest date of print.
Personality Profile: A single story or series on a person or persons in motorsports.
Race Report: This should catch the action, the drama, the excitement, the importance of the competition. Is there insight into why something happened? (You must have been present at the race for it to be an eyewitness account).

Book Division: For auto racing related books published in 2013 or 2014. Authors must be EMPA member as of November, 2014. A minimum of three entries are required in order for the contest division to be viable. Only one (1) entry per author. Note: The Book Division contest will be held every other year in the future with a two-year window.


 Because writing entries are judged on content and quality, entries must be void of photographs, advertising and/or copy writing by others. This includes headshots of au-thor. Headlines and author’s byline must be present.
 Internet entries – print and submit entire page(s). Entries must be void of head-shots of author, photographs, advertising and/or copy writing by others. Headlines and author’s byline must be present.
 Entries must be glued or taped onto a sheet of unlined 8½-by-11-inch paper. En-tries larger than 8½-by-11-inch should be cut and mounted on two or more sheets of this size and type of paper.
 Entries that are photocopied on 8½-by-11-inch unlined paper do not have to be re-mounted.
 Identify on each entry on the back of its last sheet as follows:
Category: Column
Publication: Going in Circles
Date of Publication: August 6, 2011
Title: When Dirt Turns To Mud
Author: Pirmin Zurbriggen
Questions about the contest should be directed to:
Dino Oberto
Send all entries to: Dino Oberto
211 Columbus Avenue
Hazleton Township, Pa. 18202


We included the 2014 Video Contest rules in a previous newsletter but will outline them again to be sure everyone is aware of changes from last year and the strict deadline.



All submissions should be sent to judge Bill Channell on DVD. They can be sent by standard mail to: Bill Channell
PO Box 399
Epping, NH 03042
or by Fedex/UPS to: Bill Channell
9 Old State Road
Epping, NH 03042
Any questions regarding format, rules interpretation or shipping can be directed to Bill at (603) 679-6796 or by e-mail at racevid@earthlink.net.
*Only work completed or first available to the public after last year’s deadline of November 12, 2013 is eligible.
*All persons (talent) appearing on-camera (broadcast) or the producer (video) must be EMPA members in good standing by December 1, 2014. This includes multiple hosts of a racing show but does not include brief-segment reporters, drivers being inter-viewed, voice-over announcers, other non-broadcast personnel or guests on the show.
ALL entries should be accompanied by the following information:
Entrant’s Name or Names - Telephone number of contact person - Division and Class they are being entered in - Title of the segment/show/video - Date of broadcast or production – Media Affiliation (TV station, production company, etc)
*Each individual DVD must be clearly marked with class entered, entrant's name and entrant’s telephone number.
*Only one entry per DVD submitted.
*Only one entry per class allowed.
*Maximum of three classes may be entered
CLASS 1: SINGLE CAMERA RACE/EVENT COVERAGE: Must be of an entire race (not highlights) or racing event that was not shown live.
This class is the most difficult. It requires the most all-around, comprehensive talent/ability to produce a good video that follows the race/racing, is interesting, holds attention, and is fun to watch. In recognition of that, the winner of this class shall be named "Videographer of the Year".
CLASS 2: MULTI-CAMERA RACE/EVENT COVERAGE: Must be of an entire race (not highlights) or racing event that was not shown live.
CLASS 3: RACING HIGHLIGHTS/COMPILATIONS: Includes "crash" collections, event highlights, season highlights, series highlights, etc.
CLASS 4: LIVE PROGRAM/SINGLE CAMERA: Racing event covered live on TV or the Internet.
CLASS 5: LIVE PROGRAM/MULTI CAMERA: Racing event covered live on TV or the Internet.
CLASS 6: NEWS SEGMENT: A short part of a larger, non-racing show (example: a generic news program) that is devoted to racing exclusively.
CLASS 7: DOCUMENTARY: A look at a single subject such as a track, a driver, a series, or other racing subject.
CLASS 8: MUSIC VIDEO: Racing or race related footage edited to/with music. May be a show opening, part of a show, or a stand-alone piece. No copyright infringement allowed - NO EXCEPTIONS.
Brice NAPA Photography Contest Chairman Bob Yurko tells us that the rules will re-main as listed on the EMPA website from past years with one exception. The contest will add a “GoPro” class with the following guidelines:
Action Cam - An image captured with the use of a GoPro type camera showing the use of a creative idea and camera placement to photograph the sport in a unique way. This category will not be usable in the portfolio category.


Bill McGaffin, injured when he was hit by a car at the Fonda Speedway earlier in the season, tells us he is 95% healed and asked us to thank everyone who supported him during his recovery.
Another member for whom we wish a speedy recovery is Sandy Herensperger, who is about to have hip replacement surgery. We expect she'll be back at full speed for the January convention and her annual junket to the Indy 500.


We are ready to start membership renewals for 2015. If you send yours in during October, there may be a slight delay until the mail catches up to us in Florida. We'll be there from the week after Super DIRT Week through early November, when we'll re-turn for the holidays and Lost Speedways at the Saratoga Automobile Museum.
The following EMPA members joined at various times during the past year and will have membership continued in 2015 under our "two for one" deal that keeps everyone on the same renewal cycle. We've welcomed some of them in previous newsletters but would like to acknowledge the entire group. And remember - it's never too late to bring a media associate into the association.
Tom Coughlin Aaron Creed John Driscoll
Kimberly Forcellina Mike Joy Gary Mondschein
Lenny Slemmer, Jr. Mike Wisniewski


If you are interested in running for the board of directors in the January election, please let me know so your name can be included on the ballot. We will again make it possible for those not attending the convention to vote by mail (on the awards ballot) with the rest of the membership voting in person at the convention.
One seat with a term of one year, currently held by Brett Deyo, will be open. Last year, Dino Oberto and Earl Krause were elected to the pair of two-year seats so will hold those seats through 2015. Two years ago, Ron Hedger and Len Sammons were elected to the three-year seats with their term to also run through 2015. That means that next year will be the rare occasion of having all five seats up for election.
President             Ron Hedger                 rjhmedia@juno.com
Vice President    Dino Oberto                  dlmo@aol.com
Board                  Earl Krause                  earl@aarn.com
Board                  Len Sammons             lhs@aarn.com
Board                  Bret Deyo                     deyo99h@aol.com
Secretary            Carol Houssock           carol2race@aol.com
Treasurer            Jeff Gromis                  jjg495299@comcast.net
Until next time….. Ron Hedger



American Honda Motor Company
Webmaster: Robin Ervin-Robinervin1@comcast.net
If you want to send a note to thank the sponsors of EMPA, click here for addresses.

If anyone has a interesting or vintage photo they want to display, email Robin Ervin and I'll display it here.

Please be sure to caption the photo with the photographers By Line along with who the person in the photo is and where the photo was taken.

Scenes from past EMPA conventions

Earl Krause and Herb Anastor check out a display at the 2014 EMPA convention.
(In the right rear of the photo, legendary photographer Ace Lane Jr is chatting with fellow EMPA members.)