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Hundreds hit the VIR track for charity

By Tiffany Holland, GoDanRiver.com

965 days ago   Article ID# 1528439
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Ronald McDonald House Charities

DANVILLE, VIRGINIA (GoDanRiver.com) - Virginia International Raceway was a flurry of activity on Friday when hundreds of people came out to take their cars on the famous racetrack.

It was VIR’s open house, so local residents and automotive enthusiasts from around the country brought their vehicles to the resort to drive on the racetrack, get in some food tastings, go drifting and take a look at one of the area’s most sought-out tourist attractions.

There were “benefit laps” all day to raise money for six Ronald McDonald houses — five in North Carolina and one in Virginia. Corvettes, Mustangs and specialty cars lined up everywhere to take to the track for $25. But to get on the track doesn’t mean you have to have a sports car.

Kevin Hubbard, of Meadows of Dan, said it took him 10 years to get his Ford Focus ready for the track. He had always wanted to take it to VIR but just never had the chance, until Friday. He has parts on his car from all over the country and spent a decade sprucing it up.

“I only live about an hour and a half away and I always said I would come out there,” said Hubbard. “I heard about this and I thought this was my opportunity.”

Some of the cars on the track were described by owners as “grocery getters” with a little bit of extra work as well as plenty of trucks and motorcycles. According to Kerrigan Smith, the director of track operations, there were around 400 cars on the track Friday. He said VIR did this for charity and to give people in the community a chance to come out.

“So many people think it’s like a country club, but it’s not,” said Smith of VIR. “It’s a resort. That’s why the (Oak Tree) Tavern is always open to everyone at 5 p.m. and we have a place for people to go kart.”

Last year the open house raised $8,500 for Ronald McDonald. However, last year — which was the first year of the open house — the event took place on a cold, rainy day. With temperatures in the 80s on Friday and not a cloud in the sky, the number of visitors doubled, surprising even some of the people at VIR.

But not everyone came to race. Bill Cox, of Mebane, N.C., brought his grandson, Luke, to the race and they sat high on the balcony and had some hamburgers to watch some of the cars whiz by.

“It was such a nice day today and this is a fun place to take the kids,” said Cox.

Copyright 2014 GoDanRiver.com   (Copyright Terms)
Updated 965 days ago   Article ID# 1528439

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