|Photo courtesy of Big Al Kids & Motorsports Foundation|
ARLINGTON, Wash. – It was a once-in-a-lifetime trip last summer, in which ESPN documented the reality of a young boy’s dream coming true.
Stricken with Mitochondrial Disease, Kyle Felver met NASCAR superstar Kyle Busch for a “My Wish” special. The duo played video games, shared lunch and raced remote controlled cars. In the end, the youngster watched the professional compete at Charlotte Motor Speedway during the NASCAR All-Star Race.
Now it’s Kyle Felver’s turn to get behind the wheel. Thanks to Big Al Kids & Motorsports Foundation, Felver is scheduled to compete in a junior sprint this Friday at Deming Speedway – a 1/6-mile, clay oval in Everson, Wash.
“I met Kyle last July at Skagit Speedway when he came by the booth I had set up to sell raffle tickets for our trip to the Chili Bowl,” Big Al Kids & Motorsports Foundation Founder Al Tschider said. “He wanted to tell me that he had put our stickers on his quarter midget and tell me about his wish trip.”
A junior sprint had been donated to the foundation and when Tschider put one and one together, he called Felver’s dad to gauge Kyle’s interest.
With a driver ready, Big Al Kids & Motorsports Foundation reached out for support to get the car race ready and with the overwhelming help from a lot of businesses and people, the race car is ready to compete for the first time this weekend.
“I had a ton of help from people in this community to get to this point for Kyle,” Tschider said. “Randy Ridge of Ridge Runner Wings built the new body, Dallas and Chris Melby of Northwest Powder Coating & Sandblasting did the powder coating of everything. Randy Price called me up and said he would buy the shocks and Skagit Speedway owner Steve Beitler said he would buy the tires. There are so many people who helped create this opportunity.”
Clint Schlotfeldt of JSR Motorsports donated the World Formula Briggs motor. Brad at Pro Mod Engines donated parts and labor to get the motor race ready. Ron Starr of RS Products donated a top wing and nose wing. XXX Race Co. donated parts and fabrication work. Colton Heath of OPC did some much needed welding. JOES Racing Products donated parts. James and Katie at Design 500 Racewear donated a custom fire suit. And SpeedMart, Vic’s Old Gas Pumps, the Village Green Resort, Moka Joe’s Coffee and Steve Forler Trucking were also big supporters.
Mitochondrial Disease is a cellular disorder without a known cure. According to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation, symptoms may include loss of motor control, muscle weakness and pain, gastro-intestinal disorders and swallowing difficulties, poor growth, cardiac disease, liver disease, diabetes, respiratory complications, seizures, visual/hearing problems, lactic acidosis, developmental delays and susceptibility to infection.
Some children manage the disease well and others pass away during their teenage years. There are no guarantees.
But for Kyle, there is this Friday on a dirt track in Washington thanks to the help and support from so many caring people.
Big Al Kids & Motorsports Foundation was created to provide motor sports trips and racing opportunities for kids battling life-threatening conditions and illnesses. For more information, visit www.BigAlKidsandMotorsportsFoundation.org.
“I really believe in motor sports and it gives these kids something to look forward to," Founder Al Tschider said. “They spend a lot of time at the hospitals or just doing stuff that the normal kid doesn't have to do.”
Big Al Kids & Motorsports Foundation would like to thank Steve Forler Trucking, Village Green Resort, Ridge Runner Wings, Northwest Powder Coating & Sandblasting, Randy Price, Steve Beitler, JSR Motorsports, Pro Mod Engines, RS Products, XXX Race Co., OPC, JOES Racing Products, Design 500 Racewear, SpeedMart, Vic’s Old Gas Pumps, Moka Joe’s Coffee and all of people who have donated time and money for their continued support.