Famous People from Midland County Texas
Jim Hall and His Incredible Chaparral
Jim Hall was born July 23, 1935 in Abilene, Texas. He was one
of the greatest American racing drivers of his generation.
In 1962, Jim Hall and Hap Sharp started a small racing team in
Midland, Texas. Hall's special place in motorsports history came as
the result of him being the "motivating force" and part owner of
Chaparral Cars. Based in Hall's hometown of Midland, Texas, during
the 1960s. Chaparral cars were the most innovative cars in racing.
Hall was the first to use automatic transmissions in his race cars.
Hall, a Caltech graduate, was a very early adopter of aerodynamics
applied to race cars and was the leading proponent of that
technology for an entire decade.
Throughout the 1960sóand into the 1970s and the 1980sóJim Hall and
his team at Chaparral Cars designed, built and raced legendary race
cars that thrilled fans, amazed the competition and were considered
the most innovative cars of their time. Working quietly from their
Midland shop, the Chaparral team took race car engineering to new
levels of performance. Hall was inducted in the Motorsports Hall of
Fame of America in 1994, and International Motorsports Hall of
Fame in 1997. In 2001 he received the Caltech Distinguished Alumni
An entire wing at The Permian Basin Petroleum Museum in Midland
dedicates an an entire wing to portray the saga of Hall and