Shaun Birindelli, executive director of Speedway Children's Charities (from left) joins NASCAR driver, Reed Sorenson, and Becky Sorenson, a Speedway Children's Charities board member, at the Reed Sorenson Charity Golf Classic. The fund-raiser was held on Sept. 3.
By Valerie Baldowski
Some top names in NASCAR racing were in Hampton recently, but their visit to Henry County was for a reason other than auto racing.
The Reed Sorenson Charity Golf Classic, a fund-raiser for Speedway Children's Charities, was held at Crystal Lake Golf Club, on Sept. 3.
The presenting sponsor for the event was AutoTrader.com, according to Don Rountree, president of Rountree Group Communications Management, the public relations firm for the Atlanta chapter of Speedway Children's Charities.
Founded in 1982, Speedway Children's Charities provides funding for hundreds of non-profit organizations nationwide.
This year, the golf tournament raised $40,000 through sales of sponsorships, and from a silent auction, said Rountree. Some of the 96 participants in the golf classic included Sorenson, and fellow drivers, Elliott Sadler, Brian Scott and Scott Speed, said Rountree.
Sorenson, 25, who is a Peachtree City native, was the youngest driver ever to receive Rookie of the Year honors, Rountree continued. Sorenson drives car No. 32 on the NASCAR race circuit.
For this year's event, the winner was determined in a three-way playoff, according to Shaun Birindelli, Atlanta chapter director for Speedway Children's Charities. "Local businesses, corporate sponsors, friends, family and NASCAR drivers all participated in the Reed Sorenson Charity Golf Classic," Birindelli said. "The winning team was Chad Crowe, Trent Owens -- crew chief for Reed on the No. 32 Dollar General Nationwide car -- Steve Llames, and Josh Williams."
Birindelli said this was the fourth year for the charity golf classic, and the event has become a tradition for drivers, corporate sponsors and golfers alike.
The golf tournament, she added, was one of four fund-raising events. The others included: a NASCAR Memorabilia Auction on Sept. 5 at the Atlanta Motor Speedway; a Track Walk, on Sept. 5 at the AMS; and Hot Laps on the High Banks, held Sept. 6 at AMS.
The Memorabilia Auction provided race fans the opportunity to bid on autographed, NASCAR driver helmets and gear, as well as actual sheet metal from the vehicles, she said. The Track Walk offered fans the opportunity to walk the track with NASCAR drivers prior to the race, said Birindelli.
During Hot Laps on the High Banks, participants had the opportunity to drive their own vehicles around the track, as well as having their photographs taken in Victory Lane, she added.