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Oct 09, 2012 - 06:34 AM
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Charlotte Motor Speedway Announces Race Week Dignitaries
Posted by: newsla on Oct 09, 2012 - 06:32 AM
Charlotte Motor Speedway Announces Race Week Dignitaries

As Charlotte Motor Speedway begins final preparations for a thrilling Bank of America 500 race week, officials have added even more star power to a weekend headlined by Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, singer/actress Victoria Justice, country rockers Big & Rich, world-famous tightrope walker Nik Wallenda and NASCAR’s best drivers.


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The following is a list of dignitaries who will take part in race events this week:

Bank of America 500 – Saturday, Oct. 13
• Grand Marshal: Dan Nevins, executive VP, Wounded Warrior Project & Retired SSgt, US Army
• Honorary Starter: Ben Dellinger, combat-wounded veteran, Retired SSgt., US Army
• God Bless America: Leon Thomas, star of Nickelodeon’s Victorious television program
• Invocation: Mike Novak , president/CEO of the K-LOVE Christian radio network
• Anthem: NewSong, Gospel Music Association Dove Award-winning and Grammy nominated artists

Dollar General 300 – Friday, Oct. 12
• Grand Marshal: Mike Calbert, representing the Board of Directors of Dollar General Corporation
• Honorary Starter: Raj Agrawal, representing the Board of Directors of Dollar General Corporation
• Invocation: Rev. Joe Andresen, patron of Charlotte Motor Speedway since 2003
• Anthem: Shannon Magrane, American Idol Season 11 finalist

Bojangles’ Pole Night/UNOH Southern Slam 150/Better Half Dash – Thursday, Oct. 11
• Honorary Starter: Randy Herrod-Gonzalez, UNOH director of enrollment advertising & ROTC, NCO liaison
• Command to Start Engines: Don Lowden, director of admissions of UNOH College of Applied Technologies
• Invocation: Billy Mauldin, Motor Racing Outreach chaplain
• Anthem: Tammie Davis , ATP Records recording artist

Circle-K Late Model Showdown at The Dirt Track at Charlotte – Wednesday, Oct. 10
• Invocation: Lonnie Clouse, Motor Racing Outreach Chaplin
• Anthem: Danielle Johnson, 12-year-old star of the upcoming Broadway production of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”

Race week begins tonight with the final practice and qualifying for the Better Half Dash, where the women of NASCAR will battle on the frontstretch quarter-mile during Bojangles’ Pole Night as part of a charity race to benefit Motor Racing Outreach.

Several NASCAR personalities will test their personal rides at the Bellagio of drag strips Tuesday during NASCAR Night. For a $5 donation to Speedway Children’s Charities, fans can watch as drivers like Kurt Busch and NASCAR team members try their hand at drag racing. Fans can take a ride in a 2012 Dodge Charger for a $10 donation to SCC.

Wednesday night brings the return of the greatest show on dirt, as Josh Richards, Rick Eckert and the World of Outlaws’ best battle NASCAR’s up-and-coming stars Trevor Bayne, Ty Dillion and Austin Dillion during the Circle K World of Outlaws Late Model Showdown.

Bojangles’ Pole Night brings a bevy of action to the track as NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers set the starting lineup for Saturday’s 53rd running of the Bank of America 500. In addition to qualifying, fans can watch the Better Half Dash and the NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour UNOH Southern Slam 150, both on the frontstretch quarter-mile oval.

Charlotte Motor Speedway will turn pink during Friday’s Dollar General 300. Drivers and crews will don pink cars, firesuits and helmets to help raise awareness of the fight against breast cancer. In addition, fans are encouraged to wear pink as part of a “Pink Out” during the race.

Saturday brings a full slate of activities as part of the Bank of America 500 Pre-Race Show Presented by Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Fans can enjoy appearances by the heroes in a half shell throughout the day, as well as concerts by Nickelodeon star Victoria Justice and country rockers Big & Rich. Before the green flag drops, world-famous tightrope walker Nik Wallenda will attempt another death-defying stunt as he walks 750 feet from the grandstands, over the track and pit road to Winner’s Circle.

All of that excitement builds to the grand finale, the only Saturday night race in the Chase for the Sprint Cup – the Bank of America 500.

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