Jack Roush is an American businessman and CEO with a net worth of $300 million. Born in Covington, Kentucky in 1942, Jack Roush graduated from Berea College with a BA in Physics and from Eastern Michigan University with an MA in Science Mathematics. After graduation, he began working for the Ford Motor Company, but left four years later to start his own company.
Roush Enterprises is the parent company of Roush Racing and Roush Industries, an independent engineering company; Roush Performance, an automotive aftermarket development company; and ROUSH CleanTech, a manufacturer of propane and LPG fuel systems, all based in Livonia, Michigan. The companies employ more than 2,000 people in North America and Europe.
Roush is rarely seen without his signature Panama hat and is known as "The Cat in the Hat" on the NASCAR circuit.
Roush was inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame on April 27, 2006. In 2008, Roush was elected to the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame and inducted into Novi on September 13, 2010. On May 23, 2018, Roush was selected as one of the five 2019 NASCAR Hall of Famers and was inducted into the EAA Warbirds of America Hall of Fame on November 8, 2018 for his contributions to Warbirds and the Warbird community.
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After a short break from work for Chrysler, he set up an engineering office and worked with Wayne Gapp in racing. He sold parts his company designed for his own racing cars and worked with a German company to develop racing cars for Ford; which led to the creation of the IMSA Camel GT and Trans-Am car series. He formed his own NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team, Roush Fenway Racing, in 1988. As of 2014, Roush has three cars in the series with drivers Carl Edwards, Greg Biffle and Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. In total, his team has won seven NASCAR races. Championships: 2 wins in the Sprint Cup, 4 wins in the Nationwide Series and 1 win in the Camping World Truck Series. His cars have won two Daytona 500s with Matt Kenseth in the driver's seat. In addition to racing, his company Roush Performance designs and sells parts for racing cars and other vehicles and has been instrumental in developing improved Ford Mustangs. Roush was involved in several plane crashes. When his plane sank in 2002, he was dragged unconscious from the depths of an Alabama lake. Eight years later, his jet crashed while approaching a Wisconsin airport, and Roush lost his eye in the accident.
Roush Fenway Racing currently has two cars in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (driven by Chris Buescher and Ryan Newman). The Xfinity team was closed at the end of the 2018 season. As a car owner, Roush has won eight championships in NASCAR's top three series: two Cup titles (2003 with Matt Kenseth and 2004 with Kurt Busch), five Xfinity Series titles (2002 with Greg Biffle, 2007 with Carl Edwards, 2011-2012 with Stenhouse.) Jr. and 2015 with Chris Buescher and a Camping World Truck Series title in 2000 with Biffle. Roush has two victories in the Daytona 500 as a car owner, both with driver Kenseth in 2009 and 2012. Since Roush competed in NASCAR races, his team has collected 283 victories and 212 pole positions.
During his NASCAR career, Roush was an outspoken opponent of Toyota's NASCAR operations. Roush is vocally loyal to Ford and has fought Toyota in NASCAR throughout his career. In 2007, during the Toyota controversy, following the rocket fuel incident, Roush entered into a verbal dispute with Toyota team leader Lee White.
On April 19, 2002 (his 60th birthday), Roush nearly lost his life when his private plane, an Aircam, sank in a lake in Troy, Alabama. Roush was submerged and unconscious and had a concussion when Larry Hicks, a retired Marine in a nearby boat, rescued Roush from the water, brought him to safety, and performed a resuscitation. Shortly thereafter, Roush was flown to UAB Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama, where he was treated for a head injury, broken ribs and broken left leg. Hicks was injured in the rescue, suffered cramps in both arms and first-degree burns to his body from the fuel.
On July 27, 2010, Roush crashed his Hawker Beechcraft Premier 390 jet (registration number N6JR) on an approach to the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh Airshow in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, in the late afternoon. He got off the plane and was taken to a nearby hospital. His condition was classified as serious but stable that night. On August 3rd, Roush was brought into acceptable condition. On August 13, Roush made his first appearance on the track since the incident at Michigan International Speedway. During this time, he confirmed that he had a broken back, broke his jaw, and lost the vision in his left eye. The National Transportation Safety Board attributed the cause of the accident to pilot error, specifically "the pilot's decision not to bring the engines to takeoff power during take-off, as specified in the aircraft's flight manual, resulting in an aerodynamic low altitude standstill"
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