The maintenance team at the Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn has unveiled the restored version of a 1973 MCI Motorcoach as part of a fundraiser that contributes to MIS Cares, which supports charitable causes throughout racing communities.
The MIS Extreme Bus Makeover was awarded to Ken Schneider of Brantford, Ontario, who bid $2,025 at a charity auction the opportunity to have his vehicle professionally designed, painted, and decaled by the staff at MIS. Schneider ultimately donated $4,000 for his vehicle’s blue, orange, and white paint scheme, adorned with the numbers of racecar drivers Tony Stewart and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
“The concept started as a spur-of-the-moment idea during camper lineup one year,” says Roger Curtis, president of MIS. “Our maintenance department enjoys painting the bus during the winter months, and we couldn’t wait to show Schneider the makeover.”
The redesign brought together seven staffers from the facility’s maintenance department and sign shop, who worked on the project on and off for nearly three weeks. “This is the first bus we’ve done like this,” says Craig Hatch, the speedway’s senior director of facilities. “If you come around the infield and campgrounds, most NASCAR fans have old school buses. This was like an old tour bus, so it was different and bigger than what we’ve done in the past.”
Hatch says the project provided a nice break from the typical maintenance upkeep that goes on at MIS during the winter months. “Anybody who’s had to winterize and then de-winterize their fifth wheel or boat — imagine having 1,400 acres, 150 buildings, and 800 toilets. Just winterizing, fixing, repairing, cleaning, and then de-winterizing that, along with all of the events we had leading up until winter. We stay pretty busy.”
Once the race season kicks off at MIS, with the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards and Sprint Cup Qualifying on June 13, visitors can expect to see various improvements made to the facilities, including wider and more efficient tram roads, Hatch says.
Fans can also get a glimpse of the newly painted bus, since Schneider will drive his motor coach when he heads to MIS with a group of friends in June to watch the NASCAR Spring Cup Series Quicken Loans 400 (held on June 15).
“It is very, very stylish,” Schneider says. “I’ll be proud to drive it down the road.”
In 2013, MIS and its sister company Americrown combined to donate a total of $606,469 to local service groups and organizations through cash donations, work programs, grants and sponsorships, as well as tickets and merchandise that clubs raffle to raise money.
For more information about MIS Cares, click here.