Indianapolis Motor Speedway president Doug Boles wanted something to represent track owner Roger Penske in the company’s administrative Zoom room, and Hall of Fame Collection delivered in a quick manner suited for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES that Penske also owns.
Hall of Fame Collection found a 1960s-era Bell Toptex helmet like the ones Penske wore in his sports car driving days. Early on, Penske’s helmets donned an orange stripe across the top, and he later added a Road Racing Drivers Club logo that drivers like Penske Racing’s Mark Donohue later used on his helmets.
The helmet was hand-painted – the RRDC logo was painted as well — and it was presented by Hall of Fame Collection founder Darren L. Jack to Boles as a surprise.
Boles was indeed surprised by how well the grey helmet turned out.
“Oh, my goodness,” Boles said upon first seeing it. “That’s really cool.”
Jack provided details of Penske’s various helmet designs and showed Boles a photograph like the one provided here as an example of what Penske routinely wore. Jack told Boles it was a thank-you gift for all he has done to promote IMS over the years.
Penske tried on the helmet, which is expected to go in the IMS Zoom Room alongside other Penske and IMS memorabilia, including one of the original Culver bricks and a typewriter used by the late writer Chris Economaki.
Boles, who admits to not enjoying hugs, hugged Jack in appreciation.
“That’s so cool — that’s amazing,” Boles said.