This past week I had the great honor and pleasure to welcome Rich Shirey of America Israel Racing a new NASCAR team who will be taking the message of “United We Stand” to the Daytona 500 this coming week in Florida!
America Israel Racing or AIR was formed to promote awareness of and support by Americans for Israel, the only true democracy in the Middle East. They hope to educate Americans on the importance the United States’ relationship with Israel through exposure provided by one of the largest spectator sports in the world! With the support of like-minded individuals, AIR will spread its message of American Israeli support throughout the entire 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and beyond!
With Rich’s partner at AIR, Mark MacCaull along with Robinson-Blakeney Racing, Driver J.J. Yeley, and Crew Chief Tony Furr, America Israel Racing brings the Best of the Best to the greatest speedway in the world!
This in my opinion is one of the great Kiddush Hashem’s or Sanctification of G-d’s name that can be done. To be able to publicize solidarity between America, the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave, and Israel, the Land that G-d promised to the Jewish people, the Land of Milk & Honey, there can be no greater way to show the ties that bond these two great democracies and two great people.
As a long time NASCAR fan when I learned about America Israel Racing I went wild! Finally a real team to root for. Yes, I like to watch Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson with their sponsors race around the track, however, Dupont and Lowe’s just doesn’t mean the same as America & Israel.
Think about it. I team created by two fine individuals for the sole purpose of showing togetherness, Yachad as they say in Hebrew, United we Stand. Can it get any better than this?
America Israel Racing has some important hurdles to overcome there is no denying that. Firstly they will attempt to qualify for the Big race this Sunday February 19th. Then it’s on to the Gatorade Duels on Thursday February 23rd, and then if they qualify as there are only 43 spots in the Daytona 500 and 49 cars are attempting to make it in, they will make it to the race on Sunday February 26th! So it’s a ways to go.
The other issue is funding. The team has put together enough money to run the next race or two, but then after that it will be wait and see if the capital comes in. Obviously good performances during Speed Weeks at Daytona will be crucial in continuing the operation and their hope is that veteran driver JJ Yeley will be able to bring that car to a good finish and Victory Lane! It would be no sweeter than that.
So if you live in Israel, are a supporter of Israel, or you live in America and support the great friendship between these two great nations, then America Israel Racing is for you!