Kids Finish First.org continues to attract attention (Orlando, FL) February 7, 2008 -- Long after the checkered flag flew on the Rolex 24 At Daytona and the last echo from the field of race motors faded away off Daytona's famed grandstands,...
Kids Finish First.org continues to attract attention
(Orlando, FL) February 7, 2008 -- Long after the checkered flag flew on the Rolex 24 At Daytona and the last echo from the field of race motors faded away off Daytona's famed grandstands, the positive effect of the Kids Finish First.org race campaign is still being felt. Spearheaded by Orlando-based entrepreneur Henri Zogaib, who donated the commercial space on his Pontiac-Riley racecar to promote the Kids Finish First.org website, the ambition was twofold-to win the grueling race and to raise the awareness for Florida Children's Hospital.
The race effort didn't produce the desired result on the track after a motor problem forced the team to halt the race campaign early during the 24 hour enduro, but the increased attention for Florida Children's Hospital will have ripples that will be felt for years to come.
"We were impressed with the reaction we got on the Kids Finish First.org website, and are tremendously grateful for Henri's involvement and for the effect he's had on people deciding to become involved with Florida Children's Hospital," said Terry Newmyer, Chief Development Officer for Florida Hospital Foundation. "Even though the race car itself stopped short of the goals Henri had for the program, the effort will continue to have an effect because the gifts people give now will help our patients for years to come, so we are excited about the entire program."
Teaming with a world class driving line-up that included international all-stars Allan McNish, Mike Rockenfeller, and Lucas Luhr, Zogaib pulled out all the stops to develop a package that could combine for victory. With impressive pace in testing and the early stages of the race, it was clear that Zogaib had done his homework, only to have a mechanical problem spoil the run to victory. Ever the racer, Zogaib was disappointed by the on track result, but as a member of the Executive Board overseeing Florida Hospital, he knows that the program still had a deep impact on the future.
"It seemed appropriate to have this kind of internationally known and sought-after driving line up for the Kids Finish First.org car because that's is the same kind of approach that Florida Children's Hospital brings to developing the facility every day," said Zogaib. "The people at Florida Children's Hospital are second to none, and as I can attest, the dedication of the staff is unmatched. Obviously we were hoping to translate all these ingredients-a cause close to my heart, this driver line up, and a strong team entry-into a race win, but that's what makes this race so challenging-you never know what fate will bring. But I am proud to have been a part of this, and am also looking forward to continuing my work for Florida Children's Hospital."
Zogaib will look to balance his race schedule with a business calendar that is also rapidly accelerating, but will look to return to Rolex Sports Car Series competition again during the 2008 season.
Florida Children's Hospital is a 155-specialty bed, full-service facility served by nearly 60 Kids' Docs, the largest panel of pediatric specialists in Orlando, and a highly trained pediatric team of more than 600 employees.
The dedicated children's hospital delivers a complete range of pediatric health services to younger patients, who benefit from the expertise of specialized departments throughout Florida Hospital. Florida Children's Hospital is currently undergoing an expansion and recently partnered with Walt Disney World to be the first hospital to bear the Disney name. When construction is complete in 2010, Florida Children's Hospital will have 200 beds; private, family-centered pediatric rooms; a dedicated pediatric emergency department; an Advanced Center for Pediatric Surgery; destination pediatric programs including advanced surgery, oncology, neurosurgery, cardiology, transplant services, and full-service pediatrics; and an innovative health and obesity platform.
Florida Hospital has been caring for the Central Florida Community for nearly 100 years. As a non-profit, Florida Hospital relies on the generous donations of the community to continue to provide world-class care and expand to meet the growing needs of Central Florida. Visit www.kidsfinishfirst.org to join Florida Hospital in the race to continue to provide healthy futures for all of our children.
For more information please contact Florida Hospital Media Relations at 407/303-8214 or Sunday Group Management at 317/908-2975.