● This morning, Smithfield® and the Gene Haas Foundation had the honor of recognizing Tuesday’s Children, an organization formed in the wake of 9/11 that provides a lifetime of healing for families who have been affected by terrorism, military conflict or mass violence, with a $50,000 donation at Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) headquarters in Kannapolis, North Carolina. In addition to the donation, driver Aric Almirola unveiled the special-edition No. 10 Smithfield Ford Mustang that he will pilot in Saturday night’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Richmond (Va.) Raceway. The Ford Mustang will feature a commemorative 9/11 paint scheme and the Tuesday’s Children logo to honor those whose lives were forever changed by the tragedy and further spotlight the non-profit’s mission. Since Tuesday’s Children was founded nearly two decades ago, it has served more than 42,000 individuals. The organization’s goal is to ensure that families who have suffered losses due to the events of 9/11, post-9/11 military service, or other acts of mass violence and terrorism always have a comforting place to turn to for support and community. This $50,000 donation will help provide individuals and families with counseling and support, youth mentorship and career guidance, healing through service and peacebuilding, and much more.
● History at Richmond: In 18 starts, Almirola has earned seven top-10 finishes, two top-fives, and has led one lap on the .75-mile Richmond oval. In his most recent start there, Almirola finished sixth, which was his third-best finish of the year behind Nashville Superspeedway, where he finished fourth, and his win at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon. His sixth-place finish in April earned him back-to-back top-10 finishes at Richmond.
● Almirola and the No. 10 Ford team are bringing the same car to Richmond that piloted the team to a victory at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon on July 18. That win locked Almirola into the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series playoffs. He led 46 laps around the flat, 1.058-mile oval en route to his third career NASCAR Cup Series win. After a year full of adversity and bad luck, the victory put the No. 10 team, which was 27th in the standings and facing a must-win situation if it was going to compete for this year’s championship, in prime position to earn one of the 16 coveted berths in the 10-race playoffs. Almirola’s award-winning YouTube series “Beyond the 10” captured his entire race day here.
● In his pursuit of his first Cup Series championship, Almirola looks to continue Tampa Bay’s recent sports successes by adding to the accomplishments of his hometown teams – back-to-back Stanley Cup championships won by the National Hockey League’s Tampa Bay Lightning, last year’s World Series appearance by Major League Baseball’s Tampa Bay Rays, and this year’s Super Bowl championship by the National Football League’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
● Richmond is a hometown race for Smithfield Foods, whose headquarters are located just 80 miles southeast of the track. Smithfield celebrates 10 years of partnership with Almirola this season with a special campaign called Taste Victory. As one of the most active partners in NASCAR, Smithfield engages fans all year long by hosting a microsite that provides the opportunity to win when Almirola wins or finishes inside the top-10. When Almirola wins, one fan wins $10,000, and 10 fans win a gift card for each top-10 finish. The microsite also doubles as an Aric Almirola fan page and entertainment source where fans can get behind the wheel of the No. 10 Smithfield Ford with a custom racing game, and learn more about Almirola with fast facts, favorite recipes and custom content about his life on and off the track. Visit www.tastevictory.com to learn more. Thanks to Almirola’s Feb. 11 win in his Duel qualifying race for the Daytona 500 and his July 18 win at New Hampshire, two lucky fans have already won $10,000 each.
● Almirola’s 2020 season proved successful when he earned a career-high 18 top-10 finishes, six top-fives and led 305 laps. During the season, Almirola went on a five-race streak of top-five finishes and earned nine consecutive top-10s.
● Career Stats: Almirola has career totals of three wins, two poles, 26 top-five finishes, 82 top-10s and 893 laps led in 379 NASCAR Cup Series starts.
● Beyond the 10 YouTube Series:In 2021, Almirola continues to share his life beyond the No. 10 Ford with season three of his award-winning YouTube series. Fans and media can subscribe on YouTube to see Almirola’s personality on and off the track. Episodes have already featured life as a dad, a husband and an athlete, and it gives fans a unique perspective on what goes on in the life of a professional NASCAR driver. Fans can also follow Almirola’s social media channels: @Aric_Almirola on Twitter and Instagram, and @AricAlmirola on Facebook. Almirola’s latest Beyond the 10 episode addresses the question “are NASCAR drivers athletes” in honor of the Olympic break.
Playoff Standings (with two races to go before Round of 12):
1. Denny Hamlin (2,072 points) 1 win
2. Kyle Larson (2,106 points) +80 points
3. Martin Truex Jr. (2,062 points) +36 points
4. Kurt Busch (2,062 points) +26 points
5. Ryan Blaney (2,048 points) +22 points
6. Joey Logano (2,047 points) +21 points
7. Kevin Harvick (2,046 points) +20 points
8. Brad Keselowski (2,038 points) +12 points
9. Christopher Bell (2,031 points) +6 points
10. Chase Elliott (2,030 points) +4 points
11. Aric Almirola (2,029 points) +3 points
12. Alex Bowman (2,026 points) +0 points
13. Tyler Reddick (2,026 points) -0 points
14. Kyle Busch (2,024 points) -2 points
15. William Byron (2,017 points) -9 points
16. Michael McDowell (2,006 points) -20 points