Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Happy Birthday Adam Petty and Thank You

Happy Birthday Adam Petty and Thank You

Legacy: Driver Safety & Victory Junction

Today would have been Adam Petty’s thirty-eighth birthday. For those of you unfamiliar with this NASCAR Racer; Adam was born on July 10, 1980 in Trenton, NJ into NASCAR Royalty. 

Adam was the first fourth-generation driver in NASCAR history. His great-grandfather was Lee Petty; his grandfather is Richard “King” Petty; and his father is Kyle Petty. 

Young Adam began his career in 1998, shortly after he turned eighteen, by winning his first ARCA race, driving the #45 Pontiac at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Sadly, he died shorty after, at the age of nineteen at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway when his throttle stuck wide open at turn three causing the car to hit the wall during practice.

As the mother of a race car driver, NRM is especially thankful to Adam and the Petty family.

The HANS device (also known as a head restraint) is a safety item compulsory in many car racing sports. It reduces the likelihood of head and/or neck injuries, such as a basilar skull fracture, in the event of a crash.

While it was Dale Earnhardt's death (Feb. 18, 2001) that ultimately led NASCAR officials to mandate the use of the Head and Neck Support (HANS) device to prevent basilar skull fractures, Adam’s death in a practice crash started NASCAR’s migration to that mandate.

Adam Petty's star was extinguished way too early. Incredibly, five months after Adam's death, his family partnered with Paul Newman and the Hole in the Wall Gang Camp to begin the Victory Junction Gang Camp in Randleman, North Carolina, as a memorial to Adam.

Victory Junction provides life-changing experiences for kids with chronic medical conditions or serious illnesses. The camp, opened in 2004, remains one of NASCAR's most popular official charities.

This NASCAR Race Mom appreciates Adam’s sacrifice and must take a moment to recognize the expense our sport’s safety extracted.   Happy Birthday Adam. We remember and miss you greatly. 

Please click here to learn more about Victory Junction.

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