The new owners of Hall of Fame Racing are settling into their new venture, but have had to juggle their obligations with a pennant race.
Jeff Moorad and Tom Garfinkel bought majority ownership of the team last month from former Dallas Cowboys quarterbacks Troy Aikman and Roger Staubach. Moorad is the chief executive of the Arizona Diamondbacks, and Garfinkel is the chief operating officer.
They were with the Diamondbacks in Denver on Saturday night, where the team clinched its fourth division title and home-field advantage throughout the NL playoffs. Then Garfinkel flew to Kansas in time for the start of Sunday’s race.
“It’s a lot of exciting things, a lot of positive things, and this race team has a bright future ahead,” Garfinkel said. “When ownership changed for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2004, they lost 111 games that year. This year, with a lower-third payroll team, we won the division in the West. So the same sort of model that Jeff and other owners have applied there, we’re going to try to do here.
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“It’s going to take time and patience, smart discipline and strategy to do it. We’re just trying to fit into the community and do as good a job as we can.”
With that comes the impending decision of which manufacturer the team will use next season. It’s been with General Motors the past two seasons, but HoF has a close alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing, which is moving to Toyota next year.
Garfinkel said their first choice is to stay aligned with JGR and move to Toyota, but they are a week or so away from completing any deals.
“We don’t have a manufacturer deal at this point. We’re working on it,” he said. “These things take time. We want to put ourselves in the best position to go out and be as competitive as we can, and we’re talking to them about that right now.”