Sad News - Jim Foster

DAYTONA BEACH - Jim Foster, the fourth president of Daytona International Speedway, died Friday after a decade-long battle with Alzheimer's disease. He was 91.

Foster was hired by NASCAR founder Bill France Sr. in 1967 as assistant to the president and worked in several capacities for the France family.

He was NASCAR vice president of marketing before becoming Speedway president in September 1990. He retired from the job in 1995, following the then Pepsi 400 race, and then went into full retirement a year later.

While Foster was hired by "Big Bill," he spent half his career working with Bill France Jr., who had been Speedway president from 1982-87.

One of his earliest achievements was creating the Motor Racing Network in 1970, now identified as MRN, a subsidiary of ISC Motorsports.

Foster created the Speedway's Checkered Flag Committee, which he founded in 1974, pulling together local businessmen and businesswomen to act as "community ambassadors" during racing events.

Foster served on the board of directors of the Daytona Beach chapter of the American Red Cross and was president of the Halifax Area Advertising Authority.

He did extensive volunteer work for Halifax Health Medical Center and its foundation.

Soon after his retirement, Foster could be found in the Halifax parking lot using a golf cart to shuttle visitors from the parking lot to the front door of the medical facility.

Foster had been in Halifax Hospice for two weeks before his death.

Lohman Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

--- Daytona Beach News-Journal --