Vail man wins trip to race school in contest
Doug Johnson of Vail will head to Pikes Peak International Raceway near Colorado Springs later this month for some hands-on racing experience as the winner of Vail’s “65 Max” contest. Johnson’s name was pulled from 195 entries, some from as far away as California and New Jersey, during a drawing July 1. The winning entry was announced during Sunday’s Vail America Days Parade, where Johnson joined Police Chief Dwight Henninger as a participant in the parade. The town began collecting contest entries three months ago when officials announced a year-long campaign to reduce speeds along the 10-mile stretch of Interstate 70 through town and to reduce the impact of highway noise in Vail’s neighborhoods. The contest, which was promoted by posters in service stations and other outlets throughout the area, encouraged drivers to refrain from speeding on I-70, offering a chance to drive a NASCAR Cup 600 HP race car instead. The race car program will take place July 17, offered by the Richard Petty Driving Experience, and includes training by a professional driver and eight laps around the track at Pikes Peak International Raceway. Johnson, a ski school supervisor for Vail Resorts, signed up for the contest during the town’s annual meeting in March, the first day entry forms became available. Entries were also offered to drivers who’d been pulled over for speeding and other violations. Henninger said the contest forms gave officers a way to introduce some humor into the traffic stops.Since the 65 Max campaign began on April 19, the department has issued 45 citations for speeding and another 334 warnings. The department will continue to dedicate at least 21 hours per week to I-70 traffic safety patrols throughout the year.