With the checkered flag waved on the only night race in the Chase for the Sprint Cup Series Championship, Bank of America North Carolina and Charlotte Market President Charles Bowman and Charlotte Motor Speedway (CMS) President Marcus Smith offered their thoughts on the successful completion of the Bank of America 500.

“Charlotte is home to Bank of America and the heart of NASCAR, and we’re proud that our partnership with CMS creates a meaningful race for fans and the community,” said Bowman.  “We view our ongoing support for the Bank of America 500 as a way to help set opportunity in motion that advances important community needs across the region.”

This year, the bank used its sponsorship of the Bank of America 500 to raise awareness for a critical need – education.

  • Earlier this week, Bank of America announced $1 million in grants in conjunction with the Bank of America 500 to local non-profit education organizations, including Teach for America and Freedom School Partners.
  • On Tuesday, Bank of America hosted the third annual Students at the Speedway event, an innovative partnership with Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools that delivers NASCAR-themed curriculum to area middle school students, demonstrating the direct correlation between Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) and success on the racetrack. This fall, the program will be taught to all 11,000 seventh grade students in the district.
  • At tonight’s race, several members of the community, including the winners of the company’s signature philanthropic program, the Neighborhood Excellence Initiative, were honored during pre-race ceremonies and got the chance to be introduced alongside drivers. 
  • Local 8th grade science teacher Kenny Tucker had the honor of handing over the trophy to the Bank of America 500 champion in Victory Lane. 

“We were thrilled to honor these special members of the community at the speedway, and we worked tirelessly with Bank of America to provide great opportunities for fans as they came to the greatest place to see the race,” said Smith. “The fans told us they wanted greater access to the drivers they love, so we delivered just that – providing thousands of fans direct access to NASCAR’s stars during Bank of America 500 weekend.” 

Some of the new initiatives that provided fans access to NASCAR’s best talent included:

  • Richard Petty and Junior Johnson held a Q&A forum with fans 
  • Kasey Kahne and Kenny Wallace both stopped by the newly created OktoberFast event at the track for Q&A sessions 
  • Winners of a Bank of America text-to-win promotion stood on stage during driver introductions alongside Carl Edwards, Joey Logano, Reed Sorenson and Kyle Busch
  • Jamie McMurray conducted a meet and greet with fans at the Bass Pro Shop
  • Jeff Burton hosted families with Boy Scouts or Scout Masters at a Q&A session
  • Jimmie Johnson and Martin Truex Jr. spoke to fans at PRN’s Up to Speed fan forum 
  • More than 20 NASCAR Nationwide Series drivers signed autographs for fans on pit road