WARRENDALE, PA (April 2, 2004) - SAE International is proud to be a sponsor of the 2004 International Wheel Awards, honoring excellence in automotive journalism. Congratulations to all of the award nominees!

The following information regarding 2004 winners has been copied from the original press release issued on April 1, 2004 by ICNPR:

DEARBORN, MI (April 1, 2004) - The Detroit Free Press took the coveted Golden Wheel Award, honoring the best-of-the-best, in the Detroit Press Club Foundation's 2004 International Wheel Awards competition. Winners in the competition for journalistic excellence, honoring works broadcast or published about the automotive industry in 2003, were announced tonight at the Automotive Hall of Fame.

The winning news story, titled “Migration from the Motor City,”was a combined effort of journalists at the Detroit Free Press. Judges said, “From their basic scene-setting opener through stories about foreign trucks taking on the Big Three's last stonghold - the pickup - to the differences between imports and domestic vehicles, to the UAW's inability to take hold of new auto plants in the South and Toyota's new truck plant in Texas, this series smacks of authority.”

The International Wheel Awards was established by the 40-year-old foundation as an extension of its charter to promote excellence in journalism, and in recognition of Detroit's and Michigan's global significance in the automotive industry. Edward Lapham, executive editor of Automotive News and president of the DPCF, presided. He said, “We are grateful to all the communication professionals and donors who make possible the continuation of this competition.”

The Detroit Free Press' entry also placed first in the category for Newspaper - News Story or Series. Second place winners were The Detroit Free Press writers for “UAW Settlement.” Third place went to The Detroit News writers Lisa Zagaroli and April Taylor for “Unsafe Saviors.”

In the Newspaper - Editorial Column category, Daniel Howes of The Detroit News swept first, second and third place with three columns. Judges said of his column, “Profit-rich Toyota Threatens Big 3,” “Howes has strong opinions but backs them up with reporting and knowledge.” Howes' second place entry was “Will DCX Merger Ever Pay Off” and third was “Eaton Couldn't Win in Merger.”

In the Newspaper - Product Review category, Mark Phelan of The Detroit Free Press won first place for “F-150: The Best Pickup Truck Ever.” Judges said it was “...a thorough review of a highly popular product.” Anita Lienert of The Detroit News took second for “Cadillac Juices It Up.” Phelan also took third place for “Land Rover Discovery.”

In the category for General Interest Magazine/Special Interest Publication - News Story or Series, first place went to Diana T. Kurylko of Automotive News for an article that “combines exhaustive reporting with graceful writing,” according to the judges. The piece was titled “Wall Street Paints a Grim Picture of Big 3 Prospects.” Second in this category went to Katherine Zachary, Brian Corbett and Barbara McClellan of Ward's Auto World for their article “The New China.” Third went to Harry Stoffer of Automotive News for “Safety Hazards Cloud Hydrogen's Bright Promises.”

The General Interest Magazine/Special Interest Publication - Editorial Column (print) category was won by Paul Lienert of Global Auto Insider for his column “The Road Ahead: Your Next Car Purchase: Patriot or Scud?” Judges said, “The writer carefully deals with the issue of buying American automobiles.” Second place went to John K. Teahen, Jr. of Automotive News for “Buying from China: A Moral Puzzle,” and third place went to Kevin Wilson of AutoWeek for “Cooking Numbers with Gas.”

The General Interest Magazine/Special Interest Publication - Photography first place award went to Jim Sitz for the “The Maserati Club 2004 Calendar.” “This is the standout,” said the judges. Second place was won by Michael Zumbrunn of Automobile Quarterly for “Ferrari Monza 860.” Third place went to Seymour G. Pond of iL TRIDENTE for “Real World Coupe.”

The General Interest Magazine/Special Interest Publication - Product Review category winner was Bob Gritzinger of AutoWeek for “An Ocean Apart,” which the judges considered “a clearly written product review (that) included great context about the merger.” Second and third places in the Product Review category were won respectively by Frank Markus of Car and Driver for “Saturn Ion 3” and Natalie Neff of AutoWeek for “Bobby Goat.”

In the Internet - News Story or Series category, a sweep with first, second and third went to; first place to staff writers for “Incentives: Carrot or Noose?” about which the judges said, “...the total package...comprehensive...very readable..fascinating history...great topic.” Katherine Zachary's second place was for “As Auto Makers Brace for War, Toyota Faces Particular Challenge: Launching New Brand.” While third place went to Kevin Kelly for “Porsche - VW Love Fest May Be Over.”

The Television - Series first place was won by David Scrivener and John Davis of MotorWeek for the “Motor Week Program #2220, 2221, 2222.”

The Television - News Story first place award went to Roderick Meloni of WDIV-TV for “OnStar Rising.”

The Television - New Program/Documentary first place award was won by John McElroy, Dan Dancer, Peter Hickman, Carmen Erickson and Michael Purcell for “The Annual Woodward Dream Cruise” presented on Autoline Detroit.

First place in the Radio - News Story or Series category went to Jeff Gilbert of WWJ Newsradio 950 for “The Car Chronicles.” Judges said the pieces were “Fast-paced quips that entertain while providing useful information.”

Publications taking Honorable Mentions in the Wheel Awards included The Detroit Free Press, Automotive News, Car and Driver Magazine, Ward's Auto World and Ward's

In addition to cash prizes, stylized wheel trophies were presented to Golden Wheel and first place winners.

Judging was conducted in February by faculty members of the University of Nebraska, School of Journalism and Mass Communications under the direction of Dean Will Norton, Jr.

The Wheel Awards competition and presentation program were managed by Individual Communicators Network members Steve Purdy and Sally Ann Brown. The event was hosted by the Automotive Hall of Fame in Dearborn, Mich.

Contributors to the DPCF and the 2004 International Wheel Awards include ASC, DaimlerChrysler, Dana Corp., Delphi Automotive,, Ford Motor Company, General Motors Corp, SAE International, ThyssenKrupp Budd, Toyota Motor Manufacturing USA, Toyota Motor Sales USA, Visteon and PR Newswire.

For a complete listing of winners, visit

The DETROIT PRESS CLUB FOUNDATION is a 40-year-old, not-for-profit organization, whose charter is to promote excellence in journalism.

The AUTOMOTIVE HALL OF FAME is the only industry-wide means to honor the women and men of the global motor vehicle and related industries. It is dedicated to preserving the history of mobility by celebrating the creativity, toil and genius of the individual. The Automotive Hall of Fame is a visitor attraction and an educational resource for inspiring others to higher levels of achievement in their own work and lives.

The INDIVIDUAL COMMUNICATORS NETWORK (ICN), a not-for-profit corporation chartered by the State of Michigan, offers public relations and other communication services through Network members. ICN also presents enlightening forums that focus attention on key issues. ICN membership comprises individual communications professionals.