HIGHT SET TO BRING NHRA SPEED TO DODGER STADIUM -Sonoma Victor and Life-long Dodger Fan to Throw Out First Pitch July 30th- YORBA LINDA, CA (JULY 29, 2008) --- When Robert Hight was growing up before he dreamed of working on or driving NHRA...
HIGHT SET TO BRING NHRA SPEED TO DODGER STADIUM
-Sonoma Victor and Life-long Dodger Fan to Throw Out First Pitch July 30th-
YORBA LINDA, CA (JULY 29, 2008) --- When Robert Hight was growing up before he dreamed of working on or driving NHRA Funny Cars he had another dream. He wanted to be a big league baseball player. His hometown in Northern California didn't provide him a lot of options but he channeled his passion for the game into supporting the Los Angeles Dodgers. His interest in improving his game gave him the idea to ask the manager of his favorite team for some tips on how to make the big leagues.
On Wednesday night, July 30th, Hight will finally make "The Show," granted not as a professional baseball player but as one of the top professional NHRA drag racers in the country. Prior to the Los Angeles Dodgers versus San Francisco Giants game Hight will throw out the ceremonial first pitch at Dodgers Stadium.
"This is a dream come true. I have been a Dodgers fan all my life and to be able to be down on the field and throw out the first pitch will be awesome. I plan on bringing my 'Wally' from Sonoma to make it even more special. My wife Adria and daughter Autumn will also there so it will be a really special night," said the recent winner of the FRAM Autolite NHRA Nationals.
In the early 80's Hight wrote a letter to then manager of the Dodgers Tommy Lasorda inquiring about his chances of ever being a Dodger. To Hight's shock weeks later a postcard with a Pittsburgh postmark appeared in his mailbox. At first Hight thought it might be a standard form response but he pulled out his Dodger's schedule and sure enough the Dodgers were on an extended East Coast road trip at the time the postcard was sent.
"When that postcard shown up in my mailbox I couldn't believe it. Tommy Lasorda sent me a letter. I still have the postcard and it is one my most treasured pieces of memorabilia. That is why I try and be as available to the fans as I can when I see them at a race or really anywhere. You never know when you are going to make a positive difference in someone's life," added Hight.
In the postcard Lasorda encouraged Hight to play for his high school team and keep rooting for the Dodgers. Hight is still an avid fan always eager to talk about the Dodgers and he still has the postcard from Lasorda.
"I showed it to John (Force) once and he thought it was pretty neat. I'm looking forward to Wednesday night and I know I never would have gotten the opportunity to throw out the first pitch if John hadn't given me the chance to work and drive for him," said the former crewmember. "I also want to thank my sponsor Auto Club of Southern California. They have a partnership with the Dodgers and we'll be running a Dodger's themed Funny Car for the last two races of the season."
Hight now has two postcards from Lasorda and he is eagerly looking forward to throwing out the first pitch tomorrow night and hopefully thanking Mr. Lasorda face-to-face for both postcards.