NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France and Amy France attend 'A Funny Thing Happened on The Way to Cure'
On the eve of Veterans Day weekend, NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France and his wife Amy helped raise more than $6 million on Wednesday at "Stand Up for Heroes" in New York City in support of post-9/11 injured service members, veterans and their families through the Bob Woodruff Foundation. It was the latest in a long line of examples of NASCAR going beyond the call for America's troops. The Frances and another party bid and won a special auction with items and experiences from rock 'n roll legend Bruce Springsteen. The package includes a signed guitar and an hour guitar lesson from Springsteen, who also will provide a homemade lasagna dinner and a motorcycle ride in Springsteen's side car with "The Boss" driving. This year's event surpassed expectations, besting last year's record $5 million total. Springsteen helped raise $600,000 alone with the Frances and the other party committing $300,000 apiece to the Stand Up for Heroes Fund. NASCAR has a long track record of supporting the U.S. military, dating back to its roots. NASCAR founder Bill France Sr. began a tradition that continues to this day of recognizing Medal of Honor winners before the July 4th race at Daytona International Speedway . In June, NASCAR marked the fifth anniversary of its Troops to the Track presented by Bank of America initiative. Thousands of troops from local military installations across the country have been treated to customized VIP experiences which include garage tours, driver meet-and-greets and recognition during the drivers' meeting, among many other special-access activities. "NASCAR: An American Salute" is an annual tribute to the men and women who fight for our freedom. Beginning Memorial Day weekend in Charlotte through Fourth of July weekend in Daytona, teams, sponsors, tracks, the sanctioning body and its stakeholders sport special red, white and blue paint schemes and host military members and their families throughout the summer. On this Veterans Day weekend as the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup heads to Phoenix International Raceway , the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will run the Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 as veterans, active military members and their families will be honored throughout the weekend. Like every weekend on the NASCAR schedule, the patriotic pre-race ceremony will feature an honor guard, a rousing rendition of the National Anthem and a military flyover. "It's in our DNA," NASCAR President Mike Helton said, "to help military families understand how grateful we are and to encourage our fans to do the same thing; it's evolved with the sport. Bill France Jr. and certainly Bill ( France ) Sr. were adamant about NASCAR being a voice to remind everybody that there were men and women who were making sacrifices so that we had the opportunity to do the things that we enjoy. "And a lot of it had to do with the fact that ( France Sr.) created NASCAR right after World War II ... he had a very direct purpose behind it. "But that culture was passed on and handed down; as NASCAR grew, that responsibility grew with it." MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView
Brian and Amy France as well as other celebrities talk about attending the Michael J. Fox Foundation event in New York City.
Chairman and CEO: Meeting 'gives everybody a really good seat at the table' RELATED: Drivers react to formation of drivers' council LONG POND, Pa. -- NASCAR Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Brian France opened up about the recent formation of a drivers' council, saying Sunday that last weekend's meeting gave an already fluid communications process a more formal setting. France spoke after attending Sunday morning's pre-race drivers' meeting at Pocono Raceway ahead of Sunday's Axalta 'We Paint Winners' 400 (1 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM). He and his wife, Amy , were at the track to promote their charitable work with the Gabrielle's Angel Foundation. Drivers who attended last weekend's summit with NASCAR officials near Dover International Speedway were overwhelmingly positive about the discussion, and the ideas that emerged from it. For France , the meeting was a continuation of an already open line of communication. "We've said from the beginning that we're going to improve our communications across the board with all the stakeholders, and they're certainly as important as anybody, so that's consistent," France said. "What you're seeing is just more formalized conversations. We talk all the time about things that are important to them... we did the same thing with the track operators. We didn't have a formal get-together with them; we now do in February of every year where it's very formal and we lay out things for them. "That just gives everybody a really good seat at the table to express what's important to them, and that's what I've said from the beginning that it's important to us." The formation of a drivers' council almost has a parallel group in the Race Team Alliance, which formed last July and grew to include the majority of NASCAR teams last August. When asked whether similar talks would happen with the RTA, France indicated he was open to the idea. "When anybody has things that can improve the sport, we're going to be open to that," France said. "It doesn't really matter how the exact form of communications happens. What matters is, it does happen and we're getting the stakeholders as close to us as we can because there's a lot of good ideas that come out of these discussions -- the drivers with safety, there's a business side to this that they have an interest in. There's all kinds of things that they have an interest in that we need to make sure we communicate well with them." When presented with the notion that having wide-open, cooperative talks about racing issues represented a major shift to a new-look NASCAR, France demurred. "Not at all," France said. "It's exactly what I said a number of years ago that that's my style is to be collaborative, to do more communications, not less. And if we have to formalize them to get more input, then we'll formalize them. Whatever it takes to get everybody to be able to express what's important to them." FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
NASCAR Chairman and CEO, wife cap off year of support
Frances donate $50,000 to Gabrielle's Angel Foundation
Brian and Amy France talk about their charity work with the Gabrielle's Angel Foundation For Cancer Research, as NASCAR hosted several child cancer survivors at Pocono Raceway. For more information http://www.gabriellesangels.org
NASCAR Chairman & CEO, wife donate $50,000 to help wounded military members
Host Matthew Dillner has a lot to deal with as he makes his way through the NASCAR XFINITY Series garage in Daytona.
NASCAR.com's Jonathan Merryman gives an update on Daytona Rising and the safety changes since Kyle Busch's crash in February at Daytona International Speedway.