Bullock Racing to Raise Awareness of Cystic Fibrosis
Summer Shootout competitor Landon Bullock is a young racer on a mission.
After losing close friend Amy Taylor Harvell to cystic fibrosis, the 13-year-old driver from Denver, N.C., has dedicated his efforts in the 10-race Summer Shootout Series at Lowe's Motor Speedway to raising awareness of the genetic disease that affects the lungs and digestive systems of approximately 30,000 people in the United States.
The No. 29 Legends Car Bullock drives each Tuesday night in the Young Lions division carries a special decal on the rear deck lid. It reads:
"Adding Tomorrows Everyday in Loving Memory of Amy Taylor Harvell 1978-2007.
Join Bullock Motorsports and make a difference in the lives of children with Cystic Fibrosis in your community. www.cff.org."
"We put the decal on our car because we lost a friend that I grew up with to cystic fibrosis in March," Bullock explained.
"Amy was more than just a neighbor though," Bullock's mother, Kristi, added. "Landon still calls Amy's mother 'aunt,' so it was a closer relationship than just neighbors. This is a way Landon can help bring attention to Amy and what took her life. Amy lived a vibrant life and only began digressing noticeably in her last year while undergoing numerous treatments."
The Bullocks knew their racing efforts could be an effective tool to raise awareness of cystic fibrosis.
"I contacted the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation here in Charlotte and spoke with them. They asked that I fax a letter explaining the Summer Shootout," Kristi Bullock said. "I told them that the races would be televised and we hoped to bring attention to the foundation. Within a day we had permission and they had e-mailed us their logo."
The mission of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is to assure the development of the means to cure and control cystic fibrosis and to improve the quality of life for those with the disease. The nonprofit, donor-supported organization is the primary sponsor of critical cystic fibrosis research.
"Amy was born when the life expectancy of someone with cystic fibrosis was in their teens. When the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation began in 1955, few children lived to attend elementary school," Kristi Bullock said.
"Thanks to the research and care supported by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, the median age of survival for a person with cystic fibrosis is now in the mid to late 30s."
Bullock also plans to donate a portion of the money he wins to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
"Fifty percent of my earnings will go to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, not only from the Summer Shootout events at Lowe's Motor Speedway but also when we run in Atlanta, Kentucky and different local tracks," Landon Bullock said.
"Our main goal is to bring attention to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation," said Bullock's father, Kelly. "It's not a lot of money, but it is a way he can raise money for something that helps."
Bullock is a veteran Summer Shootout competitor. He posted one victory and four top-five finishes last season en route to fourth place in the final Bandolero Bandits point standings. He is in his first season of Legends Car racing this year.
"I started racing Bandoleros when I was 8 years old. We raced those until last year and then moved up to Legends Cars," Landon Bullock said.
Lowe's Motor Speedway's 14th annual Summer Shootout, which runs each Tuesday night through Aug. 7 with a special Wednesday night event on July 4, features three classes of Bandolero racing, four divisions of Legends Cars and the Thunder Roadsters.
Admission is just $7 for adults. Children 6-12 are admitted for $3 and kids under 6 are free. Tickets are available in advance at the speedway ticket office and at Gates 4 and 5 the night of the event. Parking is free.
Spectator gates open at 5 p.m. with preliminary action at 5:30 p.m. Feature racing begins at 7:30 p.m. For information, call the speedway ticket office at 1-800-455-FANS or visit www.charlottemotorspeedway.com.