NASCAR: Charlotte Motor Speedway Goes Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness
Seven-time NASCAR champ Jimmie Johnson and Carolina Panther DeAngelo Williams painted the walls pink at Charlotte for this weekend's race.
The fall NASCAR race weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway has a different flavor in 2018 with a transition from the oval course to the Roval road course-oval hybrid for Sunday’s Bank of America Roval 400. One thing that hasn’t changed, though, is the facility’s annual “Paint the Wall Pink” event.
As in years past, NASCAR drivers and breast cancer survivors gather at CMS on Sept. 20 to paint the track’s retaining walls pink ahead of Breast Cancer Awareness month in October. Seven-time premier-series champion Jimmie Johnson, Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series driver Chris Buescher, NASCAR Xfinity Series driver Kaz Grala, NASCAR on FOX broadcaster Hermie Sadler, and Carolina Panthers running back DeAngelo Williams joined dozens of breast cancer survivors at Charlotte in the painting project for 2018.
"It's part of our lives. I'm a father of two daughters, and I know that what I learn and experience here helps me have the right lens on how I need to go home and make sure my children understand the importance of early screening,” Johnson said in a press release from the track. "It's amazing to see the cause and to see our industry support it."
The event carries an even deeper personal importance for Sadler and Buescher. Sadler’s mother, Bell Sadler, and Buescher’s wife’s aunt, Barbara Lanier Kiser, are breast cancer survivors.
“Cool to hear the stories and see everyone come out here to raise awareness on our home turf. I actually brought some family out this time,” Buescher told NASCAR.com. "To come out here and be a part of this, I think it means a lot to them, as well.”
The event is in conjunction with Saturday’s Xfinity Series race, the Drive for the Cure 200. Williams will be the honorary pace car driver, leading the race starting grid to the green flag from behind the wheel of a pink Toyota Camry.
Johnson plans to wear pink driving gloves in NASCAR races throughout the month of October to raise awareness for breast cancer, and traditionally, several race cars go pink for at least one race during the month.
Another NASCAR track, Martinsville Speedway in Virginia, has its own painting project scheduled for Oct. 3. Cup Series drivers Jamie McMurray and Kasey Kahne, Martinsville Speedway President Clay Campbell, a Chevrolet representative, and two breast cancer survivors plan to paint the curbing at Martinsville Speedway pink for the cause.
The Cup Series series will race at Martinsville on Oct. 28 with NASCAR Camping World Truck Series action taking place the day prior.