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Jr. appreciation week

Dale Jr. Pit Stop

VOTE! Jr. Most Popular Driver

From 25 to 20,000 in a Heart Beat

By: Sandra Hollis

It is not even a year old yet, and the Dale Jr. Pit Board Charity is over and above their $10,000 goal. With their recent fundraiser to benefit Michael Waltrip’s “Party With the Posse”, the group tipped the scales at $20,000 in donations for the year. If there were an award for Rookie of the Year in the charity category, the Pit Board Charity would win hands down.

The charity began in the off season when Sonya Clay of California came up with the idea of matching charities to Dale Jr.’s finishing positions each week. Jr. Motorsports was consulted on the charity line-up, placing charities in line that held a special place in Dale Jr.’s heart. Sonya then asked fans on the Pit Board, the message board for the Dale Jr. Pit Stop ( to pledge money each week to send to the charity that matched Junior’s finishing position. The first week of the season, the donation was $25. The word quickly spread with the addition of a website and PR assistance. To date, some of Dale Junior’s most dedicated fans have pledged money and participated in fundraisers to bring the group total to over $20,000. One of the most extraordinary efforts by the group this year was a care package for Tyler McGrath. Tyler suffered from leukemia and when it was brought to the groups attention that Junior was his favorite driver, the group came together and donated Junior items to send Tyler to decorate his hospital room. In his darkest hours, the Pit Board Charity brought a ray of sunshine by surrounding this little hero with his favorite things. When Tyler succumbed to his illness, they didn’t stop there. The PBC has donated funds to the Tyler McGrath fund to assist his family with the outstanding medical expenses.

The Dale Jr. Pit Board Charity’s largest donation this year has been for the Faison School of Autism. It is located in Richmond, Va. and is attended by Halie Sadler, the daughter of Winston Cup driver, Hermie Sadler. The charity held a sweepstakes during the week of the Richmond race recently and raised $2000 for the school. In addition at the request of Jr. Motorsports, the school was given two spots in the charity line up.

The rookie stripe will be off next year for this group, and there are plans to add some more drivers to the charity. The Dale Jr. Pit Board Charity has accomplished all this in a heart beat. The heart beat of the ladies that volunteer their time to manage the charity, the heart beat of the Dale Jr. fans that donate each week and the heart beat of the young man that inspires all of this, Dale Earnhardt Jr.

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