At an event to kick off NASCAR Championship Weekend in Miami on Thursday, November 16, Comcast announced the Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department as the winner of the third annual Comcast Community Champion of the Year Award. Comcast created the award in 2015 to honor NASCAR industry members for their philanthropic efforts, awarding $60,000 to the winner’s selected charity and $30,000 to the respective charities of the two remaining finalists.
Led by coaches Shaun Peet and Mike Metcalf, the Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department began meeting monthly to identify ways to help and impact local organizations in need. The team has dedicated countless hours to charities around the Charlotte, North Carolina area, including Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte, Charlotte Rescue Mission, Camp Care and Barium Springs Home for the Children. They have participated in clothing drives, disaster relief cleanup, building clean up and restoration, cooking and serving meals, and trail building, among other activities. The department has also led a yearly bicycle drive called the "Race to the North Pole," which in 2016 donated more than 150 children’s bicycles to the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte.
In addition to their work with local charities, the team has also sought out ways to give back to the NASCAR family. After the unexpected passing of No. 42 NASCAR XFINITY Series car chief Ryan Shea in March 2016, the Pit Crew Department not only collected Christmas gifts for his wife and two kids, but also helped with tasks around their home to provide care and support during a difficult time.
The $60,000 donation from Comcast on behalf of the Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department will be provided to the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte, and will support the organization’s efforts to provide a home for families of children receiving treatment at local Charlotte-area hospitals.
"It is an honor to recognize the Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department as the 2017 Comcast Community Champion of the Year, as they truly embody the selfless and passionate spirit of giving back that this award represents," said Matt Lederer, Executive Director of Partnership Marketing at Comcast. "Comcast places high value on community service, and we’re humbled by the incredible stories that we’ve been able to highlight in the NASCAR industry through this impactful award."
The Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department was chosen by a panel of judges consisting of former NASCAR driver Kyle Petty, NASCAR.com reporter Holly Cain and 2016 Comcast Community Champion Wade Jackson, as well as executives from Comcast and NASCAR. The other finalists, Jimmie Johnson and Brad Keselowski, were each awarded $30,000 toward their respective charities. Each finalist’s story can be viewed by clicking here.
"It’s huge for our team to win the Comcast Community Champion of the Year Award. We’ve always wanted to serve behind the scenes, but having the opportunity to bring awareness to the people and organizations we’re passionate about is a huge honor," said Mike Metcalf. "Winning this award reminds us that it isn’t the Victory Lane hats, the trophies and the wins that impact others most in life, it’s about making a difference."
Comcast has a long track record of community service, aiding in the advancement of local organizations, developing strategic programs and partnerships, and mobilizing resources to connect people and help them thrive. To learn more about the Comcast Community Champion of the Year Award, as well as the finalists, please visit: ComcastCommunityChampion.com.