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Torrence, Coughlin step up to sit down for Darrell Gwynn Wheelchair Challenge

Former NHRA Top Fuel racer Darrell Gwynn, paralyzed in a racing accident 30 years ago, has created a Wheelchair Challenge to continue to advocate and raise money for programs for those in similar or worse situations. NHRA's Steve Torrence and Jeg Coughlin Jr, were among the first to step up to help.
23 Sep 2020
Posted by NHRA.com staff
Darrell Gwynn

Thirty years ago, NHRA Top Fuel legend Darrell Gwynn was injured in a racing accident in England and confined to a wheelchair. Since then he has worked tirelessly to advocate for those in similar or worse situations, including the annual Track Walk For Those Who Can't at the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals.

Through the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis and the Buoniconti Fund, Gwynn has created a Wheelchair Challenge to commemorate the 30th anniversary of his paralyzing accident, the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and National Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Month in September.

"They challenged me to come up with something that people could do at home or at the office during COVID because charities can't have the normal fundraising events and gatherings we normally would," said Gwynn. "You never know what's going to work, but this one seems to be making a difference. My goal is to raise $1 million and we're well on our way towards that."

Participants agree to sit in the “Hot Seat” of a provided wheelchair and are asked to sit in it and spend some time trying to do every day, normal things in theirhome or office, then share their videos and descriptions via social media, and then challenge one of their friends to sit in the “Hot Seat” for a day. Participants also are asked to donate funs to further the cause.

The idea is to convey how it feels to lose, temporarily, a key function nearly everyone takes for granted –- mobility and get the public at large to understand the challenges we face on a daily basis. This has been the reality for Gwynn for more than 30 years, and millions of others around the world.  It is his hope that this effort will get people to understand a little bit more about the challenges millions face each day.

NHRA champions Steve Torrence and Jeg Coughlin Jr. are among those who have stepped up to sit down, as have a number of other motorsports drivers Darrell and Michael Waltrip, Bill Elliott,  and Ryan Newman,, and NHRA's Alex Laughlin and Antron Brown also will be taking part soon.

For more information about the Wheelchair Challenge, visit http://bit.ly/DG_WC_Challenge.