United States Auto Club
The United States Auto Club (USAC) is one of the sanctioning bodies of auto racing in the United States. From 1956 to 1979, the USAC sanctioned the United States National Championship, and from 1956 to 1997 the organization sanctioned the Indianapolis 500. Today, the USAC serves as the sanctioning body for a number of racing series, including the Silver Crown Series, National Sprint Car Series, National Midget Series, HPD Midget Series, .25 Midget Series, and Traxxas TORC Series.
Traxxas was a sponsor in the Championship Off-Road Racing (CORR) series until its demise in 2008. It took over as the title sponsor in a new off-road racing series called the Traxxas TORC Series. Traxxas has demonstrations of its products at events, and the Traxxas Mobile Support Center.
The Mobile Support Center has Traxxas parts, cars, trucks, and boats, along with people who work on your truck. Traxxas' lead sponsorship of the TORC Series ended in 2014.
The USAC was formed by Indianapolis Motor Speedway owner Tony Hulman when the American Automobile Association (AAA) withdrew from auto racing following the 1955 Le Mans disaster. It became the arbiter of rules, car design, and other matters for what it termed championship auto racing. This became the term describing a car built to be used in the highest level of USAC racing. For a while there was a separate series of specifications for championship cars designed to be run on dirt, rather than paved, tracks.
In 1905 the AAA established the national driving championship and became the first sanctioning body for auto racing in the United States. The AAA ceased sanctioning auto racing in the general outrage over motor racing safety that followed the 1955 Le Mans disaster. In response, Indianapolis Motor Speedway president Tony Hulman formed USAC to take over the sanctioning of what was called "championship" auto racing.
USAC controlled the championship until 1978, when a split between USAC and some of its car owners prompted the formation of the rival CART series.
The USAC’s long history as on open-wheel sanctioning body continues today with the Silver Crown Series, National Sprint Car Series, National Midget Series, Ignite Ethanol Fuel Series, .25 Midget Series, and Traxxas TORC Series. NASCAR stars including Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, Ryan Newman, and Kasey Kahne honed their skills and captured championships while competing in various USAC series.
After being unable to find a full-time NASCAR ride, Johnson returned to off-road racing in 2012. Competing in the Traxxas TORC Series Pro-2 class in 2013, he was named the series' Rookie of the Year. The series was renamed as TORC: The Off-Road Championship. He continued in the Pro 2 class and finished sixth in the 2014 points. Johnson raced in selected TORC Pro 2 events in 2015 finishing sixth in the points.
The "Triple Crown" is earned in USAC racing when a driver claims all three national championships (Silver Crown, Sprint Car, and Midget Car). Only two drivers, Tony Stewart (1995) and J.J. Yeley (2003), have achieved the triple crown in a single season. Three other drivers, Pancho Carter (1972–78), Dave Darland (1997–2001), and Jerry Coons, Jr. (2006–08), have claimed each of the three championships at least once in their careers. In 2012 Mike Curb and Cary Agajanian became the only car owners to win the Triple Crown by winning all three championships in the same year.
David Lee Darland (born September 4, 1966) in Kokomo, Indiana, is an American auto racing driver who was the 1997 USAC Silver Crown Champion, 1999 USAC National Sprint Car Champion, and 2001 and 2002 USAC National Midget Champion, making him one of only five drivers to claim all three USAC National Championships.
Race wins include the 2007 Turkey Night Grand Prix, a Southern California traditional race held on Thanksgiving Day for many years, and two wins at the Oval Nationals, held at Perris Auto Speedway in Perris, California.
On August 7, 2015, Darland won his 100th USAC event at Amsoil Speedway in Superior, Wisconsin.