For the fifth consecutive year, B.R.A.K.E.S. (Be Responsible And Keep Everyone Safe) will be inviting many of the brightest stars from the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series, the fans who follow them, and supporters of this lifesaving 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization to gather for the B.R.A.K.E.S. Benefit Dinner at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Concord, N.C., Thursday, Sept. 13.
The dinner will follow the organization’s annual golf tournament earlier that day.
This year, the dinner will feature an added touch of Hollywood: The special guest speaker will be Rudy Ruettiger, whose life story inspired the motion picture Rudy starring Sean Astin. The movie depicts Ruettiger’s repeated attempts to fulfill his dream of playing for the University of Notre Dame’s Fighting Irish football team despite his small size and lack of athletic skills. Eventually, he wins the admiration and respect of the team for his hard work and dedication and gets the opportunity to play in the final game of his senior year, much to the delight of his teammates and Notre Dame fans alike. Now an inspirational speaker, Ruettiger is a natural choice to address those attending the B.R.A.K.E.S. affair.
“We think it’s going to be a sensational evening,” said Doug Herbert, B.R.A.K.E.S. founder and popular star of NHRA and IHRA Top Fuel racing. “Everyone will enjoy hearing what Rudy will be sharing with us, and at the same time, drag racing fans will be able to socialize and sit next to some of the NHRA’s best-known drivers, legends, and team owners. We are really looking forward to what we think will be the best Benefit Dinner we’ve had to date.”
A silent and live auction including sports and entertainment memorabilia, several special travel getaways, and a host of unique items to benefit B.R.A.K.E.S. will also be part of the evening’s program.
A cocktail hour is scheduled for 6 p.m., and dinner will be served at 7 p.m. Tickets are $150 per person.
Earlier that day, NHRA stars will be going rounds of a different kind as they join their fans at beautiful Rocky River Golf Club adjacent to zMAX Dragway for the B.R.A.K.E.S. Benefit Golf Tournament.
All NHRA fans and those looking to help support B.R.A.K.E.S. are invited to take part in this upbeat fundraising event, in which they can play side by side with their favorite NHRA drivers.
“This is the kind of event that benefits everyone in some way,” said Herbert. “The drivers get a chance to have some fun and get to know their fans a little better, the fans have a golden opportunity to enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and the proceeds will help B.R.A.K.E.S. continue its efforts to teach young drivers safer and more conscientious driving skills.”
Many of the NHRA’s brightest stars are expected to participate. Awards are planned for the first-, second-, and third-place finishers, and contests for Closest to the Pin, Hole in One, and Longest Drive will be held. Lunch will be provided, and shuttle buses will be in service from the Embassy Suites Hotel and zMAX Dragway to Rocky River Golf Club.
The event will conclude with the 5th annual B.R.A.K.E.S. Benefit Dinner at the Embassy Suites Hotel; details will be coming soon.
The golf-tournament entry fee is $100 for a single player or $400 per team, with foursomes available. Professional drivers will enjoy complimentary registration.
“I hope everyone will set aside that date and come out for a great game of golf on a truly outstanding course,” added Herbert. “We’d like to see a big turnout and find out if these racers can swing a club as well as they can get down a racetrack.”
For more information on B.R.A.K.E.S. or to make a tax-deductible donation, log on to www.putonthebrakes.com.