"Cody Unser Night" announced at Irwindale Speedway

Irwindale, Calif. - - November 23 will mark the milestone 60th running of the legendary Thanksgiving Night Grand Prix for USAC Midget Cars (or "Turkey Night" as it has come to be known). "The Grand Prix is a race that has attained classic ...

Irwindale, Calif. - - November 23 will mark the milestone 60th running of the legendary Thanksgiving Night Grand Prix for USAC Midget Cars (or "Turkey Night" as it has come to be known). "The Grand Prix is a race that has attained classic status, one of our biggest nights of the year," said Irwindale VP/COO Bob DeFazio.

November 23 will also be designated as "Cody Unser Night at Irwindale", a special night to raise public awareness of a the little-known spinal cord infection Transverse Myelitis. The night will mark the first of some 30 special "Cody" nights to be held at short tracks across the U.S. in the 2001 season.

By now, many racing fans are aware of young Cody Unser's bout with the mysterious and debilitating disease with the awful-sounding name. It was in early 1999 that the active, seemingly healthy 7th grader, the daughter of Shelley and Al Unser Jr., was struck down with no absolutely warning ... Paralyzed below the waist by a disease that almost no one had ever even heard of.

"We're very proud to have been chosen as the first stop for this important cause," said DeFazio, "What better night than when we're celebrating both Thanksgiving and great racing to take a moment to think about our own families and how precious their health and welfare is to us. Thanksgiving night at the Speedway will be a salute to the determined nature of the whole racing community. We're very much looking forward to hosting this doubly special evening here at Irwindale!"

Cody and her mom Shelley are both planning to be at Irwindale Speedway on Thanksgiving night, November 23, along with a number of volunteers who will make information on the disease as well as the Cody Unser First Step Foundation available to interested members of the public.

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Series USAC