NASCAR Unites for 9/11 Tribute

Richmond American Flag

Richmond International Raceway has planned its most patriotic pre-race ceremony for Saturday night. (Photo: Getty Images)

To commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11, NASCAR announced today a special in-race tribute to take place on Saturday, Sept. 10 during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway. Fans attending the event, ABC-TV and MRN Radio broadcasters announcing the race, and the track announcer will all go quiet for a three-lap moment of silence from laps 9 through 11 at the .75-mile oval.

The three-lap moment of silence, in which all fans attending the race will also wave American flags, is the culmination of many 9/11 tributes and patriotic activities being planned by NASCAR race tracks, teams, sponsors, licensees, drivers, and fans in special recognition of the anniversary.

ABC’s broadcast of the Richmond race will also feature a NASCAR Foundation public service announcement (PSA) television spot that encourages NASCAR fans to pay tribute by pledging to perform good deeds, support charitable causes, and volunteer in honor of the 9/11 victims, survivors and those who served in response to the attacks. The NASCAR Unites-branded, 30-second PSA has been airing on ABC and ESPN race broadcasts, as well as on SPEED, since August 27.

“NASCAR takes great pride in the patriotism that the sport showcases every race weekend, and the 10th anniversary of 9/11 is a special opportunity for NASCAR to unite and recognize those we lost and honor those who responded with courage,” said NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France. “Bringing together the various 9/11 tributes with the NASCAR Unites platform collectively demonstrates the giving nature of NASCAR fans and those who work in our sport.”

The NASCAR Unites PSA is an extension of The NASCAR Foundation’s support for the national “I Will, Join the 9/11 Tribute Movement” campaign organized by MyGoodDeed and the HandsOn Network, which seeks to create the single largest day of charitable service in observance of the 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance (911day.org). MyGoodDeed’s campaign features relatives of 9/11 victims and survivors of the attacks, along with celebrities, sharing a special 9/11 memory or tribute. Appearing in a campaign spot as a representative of NASCAR is five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson, who will wear a Helmet of Hope in Saturday’s race to raise awareness for children and families in need.

Johnson also appears in the NASCAR Unites PSA spot, entitled “I will. Will you?” along with fellow NASCAR drivers Tony Stewart and Brian Vickers, team owner Richard Childress, Richmond International Raceway President Dennis Bickmeier, NASCAR officials, team crew members, track safety firemen and NASCAR fans. In the spot, viewers are directed to visit NASCAR.COM/Unites to submit their own 9/11 video tribute, send a postcard to a first responder and register for volunteer opportunities in observance of the 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance.

NASCAR Unites is an industry initiative led by The NASCAR Foundation that creates an opportunity for NASCAR fans, drivers, teams, tracks, sponsors and more to unite to encourage volunteerism and improve the lives of children across the nation. Through NASCAR Unites, the NASCAR Foundation will grant $1 million and generate one million volunteer hours in local communities to help kids live happier, healthier lives. Earlier this year, NASCAR Unites led an industry-wide effort in donating over $300,000 toward disaster relief efforts. To learn more, visit NASCAR.COM/Unites, Facebook.com/NASCARUnites or Twitter.com/NASCARUnites.

Highlights of various 9/11 tributes planned across the NASCAR Industry:

  •  Richmond International Raceway has planned its most patriotic pre-race ceremony, highlighted by Wounded Warriors saying the Pledge of Allegiance; N.Y. police officer Daniel Rodriguez performing God Bless America; and the U.S. Army Infantry Division Band performing the National Anthem in a “Salute to America.” First responders will also be honored with a special ladder truck American flag display. Representing the Flight 93 National Memorial in Richmond will be a first responder and Tanker 627-4 truck from the Shanksville (Pa.) Volunteer Fire Dept. that responded on 9/11.
  • Jimmie Johnson is visiting The National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial for remembrance today before being hosted by President Barack Obama at the White House in a ceremony to honor his 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship.
  • NASCAR is hosting a group of Wounded Warriors from Quantico Marine Corps Base, Fort Belvoir Army Base, and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md. as part of the new Troops to the Track program with the Armed Forces Foundation.
  • Lionel NASCAR Collectables, the official die-cast of NASCAR, partnered with the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, in a multi-car “Honoring Our Heroes” program in which several race cars will feature special patriotic paint schemes at Richmond that pay tribute while giving thanks to three military heroes who were severely wounded in the line of duty. Cars participating are driven by NASCAR drivers Greg Biffle, David Gilliland, Jamie McMurray, Danica Patrick, Tony Stewart, Carl Edwards, Trevor Bayne, and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Lionel NASCAR Collectables will also be title sponsor of the Charlotte Tunnel to Towers Run, which takes place on Saturday.
  • Many race tracks, including Daytona International Speedway, Michigan International Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway, Infineon Raceway, Martinsville Speedway, Talladega Superspeedway, Texas Motor Speedway, Dover International Speedway, Pocono Raceway, Richmond International Raceway and Darlington Speedway are hosting annual blood drives.
  • Dover International Speedway, along with the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation and Delaware Volunteer Firefighter’s Association, will host Delaware’s 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb on Sunday. In addition, Dover is hosting a free concert by the Dover Symphony Orchestra that night.

Related Topics:

NASCAR, NASCAR Sprint Cup

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