Honorary co-chairs David Ragan, third-generation NASCAR driver, and his wife, Jacquelyn, will helm the event, set for July 6-8. Teams of friends and supporters navigate from the green flag at Darlington Raceway in South Carolina to the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte with pit stops honoring NASCAR legends and history.
The Ragans join LuMind RDS Foundation to help improve opportunities for people with Down syndrome. David Ragan's older brother, Adam, was born with an extra chromosome: Trisomy 21, or Down syndrome.
"The Race for Research is a chance for NASCAR fans to meet some of the sport's legends, journey through racing history and also fund research that one day may improve learning and memory in those with Down syndrome, including my brother, Adam," David Ragan said.
Last year's inaugural event was an unprecedented success. With an original goal of raising $50,000 for cognition research, the event cleared $100,000 to aid in awarding grants to the most promising lines of research.
The event is fueled by fundraising teams who then spend three days in ordinary cars (with sponsor decals, of course) navigating through NASCAR country stopping along the way at designated "pit stops," answering scavenger hunt questions, meeting NASCAR legends and even taking laps on famous speedways.
During "pit stops," as the participants complete scavenger hunt tasks, they get a chance to look behind the scenes of famous speedways and meet some of David Ragan's racing friends. The pit stops visited in 2014 included:
Teams in the 2014 event had in-person meet-and-greets with Ty and Austin Dillion, Glen Wood, Dale Inman, and other racing legends. The 2015 route and celebrity appearances are still being finalized but will include new stops as well as some old favorites. Route details will be posted on the event website as they are finalized.
Organizers would like to thank returning sponsors, the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Charlotte and Brinks.
"Cognition research for Down syndrome has made tremendous strides over the last few years, and these new discoveries are now fueling several promising clinical trials," Ragan said. "But a lack of funding is a major reason why my brother and the more than 250,000 Americans living with Down syndrome don't have access to treatments yet," he added.
Sign up your team now and experience the thrills of NASCAR racing while you raise funds for important cognitive development research. For more information on the Race for Research and to sign up for a team or donate to an event participant, visit: www.LuMindRaceforResearch.org.
David Ragan PR