The week leading up to the NHRA’s annual visit to Brainerd Int'l Raceway is understandably a hectic one for multitime Pro Stock champions Greg Anderson and Jason Line. As Minnesota natives, their time is in high demand, and the talented tandem must balance media requests and the requirements of competition with visiting family and longtime friends.
However, one event has quickly become a fixture in the Summit Racing drivers’ yearly trip to the North Star State: Drive to a Cure, at which they will again be making an appearance on behalf of the Minnesota/North Dakota chapter of the ALS Association.
On Wednesday, Aug. 15, Anderson and Line will have their new Summit Racing Pro Stock Chevrolet Camaros and team transporter at the Powerhouse Grill at 423 3rd Ave. in Proctor, Minn., from 5 to 8 p.m. and sign autographs and sell raffle tickets for two Polaris Ranger UTVs fully decorated with a Minnesota Twins-themed vinyl wrap; all proceeds will benefit ALS patient services and research.
“This is my third year taking part in the ALS fundraiser in Proctor, and it’s a night I look forward to every year,” said Anderson. “It improved from the first year to the second, and we certainly expect it to get bigger and better again this year. Not only is it a great event for a tremendous cause, but we also get to reconnect with family and friends, spending quality time with them without the pressures of the racetrack.
“It’s just a cool night with a lot of classic cars from all years on display, as well as our Summit Racing Camaros, and it gives us a chance to reminisce about things we did when we younger. Best of all, we’re able to raise a lot of money to help fund the ALS Association and all the great work that they do. When Jason and I first got involved, we really didn’t know that much about it, but now we do, and we understand just how tough it is. It is such a terrible disease that affects so many people, and we’re not going to give up trying to raise some money until we find a cure.
“That’s our game plan – to raise as much money as we can while everyone has a great time. Last year was big, but we hope this one is even bigger. It’s just a tremendous way to kick off our weekend in Minnesota.”
For reigning NHRA champion Line, this event rings very close to home.
“I lost a good friend, Donnie Sather, to ALS in 2009, and to this day, I carry his coin inside my Summit Racing Camaro every time I race,” said Line. “It’s a horrible disease, and whatever I can do to support the research they are doing to find a cure is time well-spent. Obviously, this event is to benefit a great cause as we try to defeat this very bad disease, but it’s also a fun deal for everyone involved.
“Last year was my first time taking part in the ALS event, and I really enjoyed myself. It turned out to be this incredible car show that spread throughout the neighborhood, and we’re hoping that somehow it’s even bigger this year, allowing us to raise a tremendous amount of money for the ALS Association.”
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease that usually attacks both upper and lower motor neurons and causes degeneration throughout the brain and spinal cord. Also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, it strikes people between the ages of 40 and 70, with as many as 30,000 Americans having the disease at any given time. The ALS Association is the only not-for-profit voluntary health organization dedicated solely to the fight against ALS. The Minnesota chapter was incorporated in 1993 when patients, families, and related professionals banded together to share in their struggle with this tragic disease and to provide patient services, community education, and support of national research. For more information, log on to www.alsmn.org.
“We know how important the Brainerd race is for Greg and Jason and the entire Summit Racing team, so it means a lot that they will once again be taking time to come out and join us in our Drive to a Cure,” said Dan Hartel, whose Hartel’s/DBJ Disposal is sponsoring the event in conjunction with the Powerhouse Grill and the ALS Association Minnesota/North Dakota chapter. “Last year’s event was a tremendous success with an amazing number of cars showing up, and we’re looking to make it even better this year. Of course, we’ll have the team transporter and the two Summit Racing Camaros as our centerpiece, with Greg and Jason on hand to help raise awareness for our cause. It promises to be a fun evening, so we invite everyone to come out, have a good time, and help us raise some money for an extremely worthy cause.”
For tickets to the Luxcas Oil NHRA Nationals, call 218-824-RACE or purchase online at www.brainerdraceway.com.