Sunday, March 24, 2013

Jimmie Johnson's foundation featured at his home track

The No. 48 car at Auto Club Speedway
Credit: Tom Pennington/Getty Images for NASCAR  
Since 1980 Jimmie Johnson has raced everything from motorcycles to off road trucks to buggies. Johnson raced on short tracks, in the desert and super speedways and managed to win several races, rookie of the year titles and championships. Johnson has achieved great things, one of which is The Jimmie Johnson Foundation. Launched in 2006 by the driver and his wife, Chandra, the foundation helps families, communities and children in need.

To date the foundation has raised more than $5 million for various organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, Make-A-Wish Foundation, the American Red Cross, Hendrick Marrow Program and Victory Junction. Johnson opened Jimmie Johnson Victory Lanes, a bowling center for campers at Victory Junction.

The Jimmie Johnson Foundation also holds a golf tournament every year in San Diego, Calif. The golf tournament raised around $2 million to fund several building projects for Habitat for Humanity in Johnson's hometown of El Cajon.

The foundation has raised around $1.5 million for the Education Champion Grants program. The money was donated to public schools in Johnson’s and Chandra’s home states of California and Oklahoma, along with schools in North Carolina. The funds have been used for things such as technology, outdoor classrooms, reading programs and even playground construction.

The Jimmie Johnson Foundation selects 12 charities each year for the Blue Bunny Helmet of Hope, a program that Johnson and Blue Bunny ice cream created to give recognition and funding to charities. Each charity featured on the helmet receives a $10,000 grant and national exposure at one select Sprint Cup race. Charities are chosen by nominations from the media and fans nationwide.

Johnson brought awareness to his foundation at his home track in Sunday’s Auto Club 400 in Fontana with the foundation's name and logo on the car. After starting 18th and struggling with his car throughout the race, Johnson finished 12th and sits third in the points standings.

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