DENVER AREA TO HOST MAJOR ACTIVITIES FOR GWYNN RACING, DARRELL GWYNN FOUNDATION
DENVER, CO (July 15, 2003) – The ‘Mile-High City’ will play host to a variety of special events of prominence for the Darrell Gwynn Racing team and the Darrell Gwynn Foundation to Cure Paralysis.
On tap is the 24th annual Mopar Mile-High NHRA Nationals, the 13th of 23 events in the $50 million NHRA POWERade Drag Racing Series. The event will be held Friday through Sunday, July 18-20. The race is held at scenic Bandimere Speedway in Morrison, Colo.
Earlier in the week, on Wednesday, July 16, Craig Hospital will host its 11th Annual Motor Sports Day from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm in the vicinity of Girard and S. Clarkson streets in Englewood. Craig Hospital is considered among the worldwide leaders among facilities treating brain and spinal cord injuries.
The purpose of the annual event is to provide current and former patients with an opportunity to view nearly 200 world class automobiles, vehicles modified for drivers with disabilities, and to meet celebrity guests. Included will be the Darrell Gwynn Racing Top Fuel dragster and race team including driver Cory McClenathan. Admission is free,
Among the event’s highlights will be the Darrell Gwynn Foundation to Cure Paralysis and Quickie Wheelchair presentation of a $10,000 power wheelchair, specially designed and painted to Darrell Gwynn Racing specifications to Carrie Koch of Topeka, Kansas. Ms. Koch, 17, suffered a spinal cord injury in an automobile accident in April. She is currently in a rehabilitation program at Craig Hospital and planning to attend the University of Kansas.
On Friday, Gwynn Racing will host Ms. Koch and her family, as well as a sizable contingent of Craig Hospital and Quickie Wheelchair guests at Bandimere Speedway. A starting line presentation acknowledging Ms. Koch, as well as previous Darrell Gwynn Foundation wheelchair recipients Amanda Steiner (2001) and Audrey Begay (2002) is scheduled.
The wheelchair giveaway program is part of an ongoing national Quality of Life initiative by the Darrell Gwynn Foundation. The foundation’s creator, Darrell Gwynn, was a leading NHRA Top Fuel driver until suffering career-ending injuries including paralysis as a result of a racing accident in 1990. Since then Gwynn has continued to field his own race team as well as serving as a tireless spokesperson and fundraiser on behalf of scientific research targeted at curing paralysis.
“It is always special when we come to race in Denver”, said Gwynn, who will deliver a motivational speech to Craig Hospital patients on Thursday. “To have great companies like Berryman Products, General Motors and Quickie Wheelchairs join us in our support of Craig Hospital is marvelous. And at the race track, the staffs of Bandimere Speedway and the National Hot Rod Association go to great lengths to provide disabled race fans to enjoy a quality experience and enhance our awareness campaigns.”
McClenathan, driver of the Gwynn team’s New York Yankees/Berryman Products sponsored dragster enters the Denver event currently fourth in NHRA’s Top Fuel point standings.
Professional qualifying sessions for the Mile-High Nationals are slated at 4:15 and 7:15 p.m. on Friday, July 18. Qualifying resumes for the pros on Saturday with sessions slated for 2:15 and 5:15 p.m. Pre-race ceremonies begin at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday followed by Final Eliminations starting at 12:30 p.m.
On Saturday, July 19, ESPN will televise two hours of qualifying highlights at 7 p.m. (ET). Sunday, July 20, ESPN will televise one hour of early eliminations at 2:30 p.m. (ET). Also on Sunday, July 20, ESPN2 will televise three hours of final eliminations at 6 p.m. (ET).
Darrell Gwynn Racing fields the New York Yankees-sponsored dragster in NHRA POWERade Drag Racing's Top Fuel division. Darrell Gwynn and his father, Jerry, each former NHRA world champions, lead the team. The team's race car is driven by Cory McClenathan and tuned by crew chief John Stewart. Major Associate and Associate sponsors include Berryman Products, MBNA America Bank, Dyn-O-Mat, Winnebago Industries, Inc., Negley Electric, GMC, Mac Tools, Don Steves Chevrolet and Fabtech Motorsports.