NASCAR-CUP: McMurray kicks off Autism Awareness month

FORT WORTH, TEXAS (APRIL 4, 2008) -- Autism is a complex neurobiological disorder that currently affects one in every 150 children. This weekend, at Texas Motor Speedway, NASCAR driver Jamie McMurray will help promote autism awareness through a...

FORT WORTH, TEXAS (APRIL 4, 2008) -- Autism is a complex neurobiological disorder that currently affects one in every 150 children. This weekend, at Texas Motor Speedway, NASCAR driver Jamie McMurray will help promote autism awareness through a special paint scheme, as well as the launch of a month-long online auction with all proceeds going towards the research and support of autism and families coping with this neurobiological disorder.

"Crown Royal has been extremely giving to my foundation by providing space on the car, as well as on my firesuits and helmets," said McMurray. "Each season they pick a race where we can run the autism awareness puzzle pieces, and throughout the season, they assist us with promotions, donations and helping promote awareness."

McMurray will pilot the No. 26 Crown Royal Cask No. 16 Ford Fusion in this weekend's Samsung 500 at Texas Motor Speedway. Along with the black and gold paint scheme, the rear quarter panels and the television panel of the No. 26 Ford Fusion will don the autism awareness puzzle pieces.

"A few weeks ago, we thought of a pretty cool promotion to give two fans a full access weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. Along with a pair of garage passes, the two fans will also enjoy get to watch the race from one of the luxury suites. And to top off the weekend, they will leave with a replica helmet. The two fans went way above our expectations and bid more than $4,200 on the package. I hope it's worth every penny to them, because all of the money is going to such a great cause."

Dawn Litteken and Chris Dake, both from Springfield, Mo., McMurray's home state, will travel south for this once-in-a-lifetime weekend with the No. 26 Crown Royal team.

"Both Chris and I are looking forward to a great weekend with Jamie," said Litteken. "We realize the challenges that autism presents, and being able to support a great cause was reason enough to donate the money. Being able to attend the race and spend the weekend with the No. 26 team is extra to us."

The Jamie McMurray Foundation's month-long auction also launches this weekend and will run through the end of April. Fans can bid on all kinds of memorabilia with all proceeds benefiting autism research and support. foundation.nascar.com/NetCommunity/Page.aspx?pid=793&srcid=793

"It's so great to see so many people come together and want to help with everything we are doing this month for autism awareness," said McMurray. "Hopefully, we can top this weekend off with a great run for us in our special No. 26 Crown Royal Cask No. 16 Ford Fusion. We built some momentum last weekend, and hopefully we can carry it all the way through Texas this weekend."

-credit: rfr

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Series Charity
Drivers Jamie McMurray