Road Course Master: Joy Names Gurney His Hero


By Ben White

Mike Joy, lead announcer for Fox Sports, has broadcast most major forms of American motorsports for television and radio for decades. Prior to joining FOX in 2001, the Chicago native anchored CBS Sports’ coverage of the Daytona 500 from 1998-2000 after working as an informative pit reporter for 15 years. He also built a successful career with Motor Racing Network (MRN) Radio from 1977-‘83.

When asked to name his all-time hero in motorsports, an iconic road racer quickly came to mind.

“It would have to be Dan Gurney,” Joy said. “He was the most accomplished, smoothest road racer that I ever knew and ever saw. He was a tinkerer and engineer and still is to this day. For that reason, he had a lot of fast cars fall out from under him.

“But if the car would last, Dan would win. That’s why we won so much in the Wood Brothers cars at Riverside in the early to mid-1960s. Those cars were bullet proof. He really was a road course master. What he did was in the space of three of four weeks in June of 1967 was amazing. He won a Champ car race at Milwaukee, the 24 Hours of Le Mans and won the Belgian Grand Prix. It was like, ‘Could you imagine any driver of this era even attempting such a thing, let along succeeding?’ He’s always been my racing hero.”