The Veterans of Racing4Vets’ Automotive Training and Competition Program in Tampa, Florida competed in two ChumpCar World Challenge endurance racing events in 2015 at Sebring International Raceway and Daytona International Speedway. This is another major achievement from the United States’ first all-service disabled Veteran endurance auto racing team.
Sebring International Raceway Oct 2-4
On October 2-4, Racing4Vets fielded their venerable Porsche 944 for the 2015 ChumpCar “Slightly More Than 12-hours of Sebring” endurance race. The Porsche was rebuilt by the Veteran team after its successful completion of the 2014 Sebring race, and made it through technical inspection with no issues.
Our Veterans planned a consistent, yet competitive pace, with 30-minute and 1-hour driver rotations. The first drivers set a great pace in the first hour of the race, consistently putting down solid quick laps and avoiding the carnage possible with over 80 cars on track at once.
Endurance auto racing puts a premium on “endurance”. Your drivers, crew, strategy and vehicle need to endure 12+ hours of heat, pounding, sliding, vibration, contact with other cars and pit stops. Within a few hours, the Porsche’s engine began to run hot. After taking the car in for inspection and repair, and sending it out again, the decision was made to retire from the race and protect the motor.
The race and crew members for Sebring included Veterans from as far away as California. As always, the Racing4Vets team couldn’t build their vehicles and attend races without the contribution of our donors, sponsors and supporters, both Veteran and civilian alike. We would like to thank Dana Heating & Air, Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, Superior Bearings, Chilly Performance, Zeigler Transmissions, Stepps Towing Services and Reutimann Collision Repair for their support.
Daytona International Speedway May 24
On Memorial Day Weekend 2015, the Racing4Vets Veteran Endurance Auto Racing Team competed in their first-ever Daytona International Raceway event. The vehicle of choice for this venerable event was a Dodge Neon, recently prepared for the race by a team of Veterans in the team’s Tampa, FL shop.
After all our Veterans’ hard work preparing for Daytona, a dropped a valve ended the Daytona race. The Daytona Speedway straights are long and fast, pushing a 4-cylinder motor to the max. After an intense search for a replacement Neon valve and keeper at every auto parts store or Dodge-Chrysler dealer, the team had no option but to give in and pull out of the race. In a 14 hour endurance race at Daytona even the smallest $5 part can end your day, despite heroic efforts.
While our Daytona ChumpCar race ended in the garage we are extremely proud of our Veterans and the superior teamwork they demonstrate. With their “never quit” attitude our Racing4Vets endurance auto racing program is just starting their long journey of success.
We would like to thank ChumpCar, Superior Bearings, Dana Heating & Air, ChallengerFest, Chilly Performance, Full Throttle Karting, Zeigler Transmissions and all our Donors, Veterans and Veteran supporters for your amazing support!
“Racing to Save 22 Veterans Per Day from Suicide”
In the last year, the Tampa Chapter has grown from two determined Veterans to a team of over 20 Veterans and civilians working together. Our Veterans have taken on the motto “Racing to Save 22 Veterans Per Day from Suicide.”
We honor our Veterans for supporting their brothers and sisters. These dedicated Veterans and their supporters have been recognized by the Pasco Hurricane and other local and national news publications for this valuable mission.
Our Sponsors and Donors
Numerous sponsors and donors have stepped up to support the team with shop space, equipment, transportation, lodging and financial contributions.
With the help of Chilly Performance and Dana Heating & Air, Racing4Vets has a fully operational race shop and race fabrication expertise to draw upon. The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office has donated vehicles. Superior Bearing & Supply has donated race bearings, lubricants, hotel rooms and a new competition go-kart for the Veterans to train. Zeigler Transmission has donated transmission parts and expertise for the Porsche 944 race car. Stepps Towing Services and Reutimann Collision Repair have donated transportation and logistics. Countless other individuals and businesses have supported our fine Veterans. We thank you all!