On Thursday, April 24, Marcos Ambrose and the No. 9 STANLEY race team spent the afternoon entertaining and being entertained by dozens of sick and injured children at Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU before heading to the Richmond International Raceway on Saturday night with a million reasons to find a way to win. As part of the continued "Racing for a Miracle" program, the team played games, gave pit stop demonstrations and shared smiles with the young patients who show immeasurable strength on a daily basis.
If Ambrose and the No. 9 team win, STANLEY will donate $1 million to Children's Miracle Network Hospitals through the Ace Hardware Foundation. If Ambrose and his Richard Petty Motorsports team finish second or third, STANLEY, through the Ace Hardware Foundation, will donate $500,000 and $250,000 respectively.
"Our STANLEY team never needs to be motivated to win a race, but each year when we have the opportunity to race for $1 million for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, it really encourages all of us," said Ambrose.
As part of the "Racing for a Miracle" program, STANLEY and the Ace Hardware Foundation will once again pledge $100,000 to Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, adding to their total contribution of more than half a million dollars since the program started.
"We have to thank the Ace Hardware Foundation for continuing to support this program and giving us this opportunity" Ambrose added. "It would be the highlight of my career to be able to win this Saturday night for these kids."
On Friday, Ambrose joined his teammate Aric Almirola and owner "The King" Richard Petty as they, along with representatives from STANLEY and DEWALT presented a $100,000 donation to the Ace Hardware Foundation and Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. Included in the check presentation, Ambrose, Almirola and Petty unveiled the paint scheme that will run this weekend on the No. 9 Ford Fusion. The special scheme includes four very special children who will also serve as "Honorary Crew Members" of the No. 9 team throughout the weekend.
"Today was hopefully the start of a great weekend for STANLEY, the Ace Foundation and Children's Miracle Network Hospitals," commented Tony Merritt, Director of Motorsports for Stanley Black and Decker. "It's amazing to see what these children go through yet still have a smile on their faces. Hopefully today we brought a little more joy into their lives and gained some more fans of the No. 9 race team and Marcos."
Now, all the team needs is a little help from Mother Nature to get the event in on time. The current weather in the Richmond area is severe, with on-track activity delayed until the storm passes.
Qualifying for Saturday's race was rained out, with the teams starting by order of points. Hopefully Saturday's event, scheduled to start at 7:00 p.m. on FOX, will get off on time, and the bright lights of victory lane will shine on Marcos Ambrose and the Children's Miracle Network.