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Apr 24, 2014 - 05:48 PM
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Rising Star Racing Drivers Visit Children's of Alabama
Posted by: newsla on Apr 24, 2014 - 05:47 PM
Rising Star Racing Drivers Visit Children's of Alabama

Rising Star Racing drivers Josef Newgarden, Spencer Pigot, and Neil Alberico arrived a little early for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama in order to take part in a special event Wednesday afternoon held at Children’s of Alabama Hospital in Birmingham. The racing trio spent time visiting with patients as part of the Austin Hatcher Foundation.


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Appropriately, the children were treated to an afternoon of racing which began as Newgarden, Pigot, and Alberico designed their own pinewood derby cars and helped each child design one of their own. It was then off to the racetrack to see just whose car was fastest.

“The kids out here definitely taught me a lesson in pinewood derby racing,” said Pigot of the event. “I don’t think I won one race, I think I finished last every time! But it’s all good. It was a lot of fun. We got to design some racecars and race with the kids so it was a great way to start off the weekend.”

It didn’t take long to realize that the kids had quickly figured out their need for speed as each took great pride in having their uniquely designed pinewood derby cars reach the finish line way ahead of each professional racecar driver’s car.

“We took a little time out today to come to Children’s of Alabama right here in Birmingham which has been great with the Austin Hatcher Foundation,” said Newgarden. “We spent a little time with the kids, we raced some cars, we drivers all got our butts kicked by the kids because they’re just really fast for some reason. I don’t know if it was their coloring skills or what it was but we had a really fun time. It was cool to do this before the race weekend. We’re getting geared up for Barber--it’s going to be a great round of IndyCar Racing for us and this was a great way to start it off.”

In addition to the pinewood derby racing event, the Rising Star Racing pilots each had their race helmets on hand which caught the attention of several children in attendance. Many of the children tried on the racing helmets and received autographs from the drivers.

“I had a great time - all the kids here were awesome!” offered Alberico. “I got my butt kicked today but hopefully that’s not the same story this weekend! It was a great time hanging out the kids. I had a blast making cars and making some new friends!”

The Austin Hatcher Foundation for Pediatric Cancer’s mission is to erase the effects of pediatric cancer and optimize each child’s quality of life through essential specialized intervention beginning at the time of diagnoses and continuing throughout survivorship.The Foundation provides services to children with cancer as well as their families through its cancer care center, Hatch’s House of Hope. The Foundation provides all services at no cost to the families. Services are funded solely by the generous donations of its supporters.

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