Thirteen NASCAR Winston Cup Series and NASCAR Busch Series drivers have agreed to participate in the annual Speedway Children's Charities NASCAR Driver Auction at Sam's Town Hotel & Gambling Hall on Feb. 27. 

           This year's Speedway Children's Charities NASCAR Driver auction in Las Vegas also boasts an impressive list of items for its silent and live auction segments.

           Britney Spears' participated in the Las Vegas Richard Petty Driving Experience last fall.  She autographed her driver uniform and it has been donated to the auction, along with an 11x14 photo of her wearing the uniform.

           Jason Beam, an artist who custom-paints helmets for many of the NASCAR drivers, will paint a helmet live on KVVU-TV FOX 5's morning show on Wednesday, Feb. 26 at 8:30 a.m. and will donate the helmet to the auction.

           Coca-Cola has donated a helmet autographed by all members of the Coca-Cola Family of Drivers, including NASCAR Winston Cup champions Tony Stewart (2002), Bobby Labonte (2000), Dale Jarrett (1999) and Bill Elliott (1988).

            The list also includes:

  • Two matted 2002 Winston No Bull 5 posters, each autographed by Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart, Jeff Burton, Bobby Hamilton Jr. and Matt Kenseth.
  • Two footballs, autographed by NFL Super Bowl champion quarterbacks Jim McMahon (Chicago Bears, 1986) and Steve Young (San Francisco, 1995).
  • Team memorabilia items, including crew uniform shirts from Rusty Wallace, Ryan Newman and Scott Riggs; and a Jeff Gordon bobblehead.
  • Autographed NASCAR cartoon by award-winning cartoonist Mike Smith.
  • Leather Budweiser Racing jacket (XL).

Many NASCAR Winston Cup Series and NASCAR Busch Series drivers are expected to participate in the auction which affords race fans the opportunity to bid for a chance to meet their favorite racers during pre-race driver introductions. The winning bidders on NASCAR Winston Cup Series drivers will ride along with them in an open convertible during the pre-race parade lap prior to the UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sunday, March 2. Winning bidders on NASCAR Busch Series competitors will have the opportunity to meet their drivers in the pit area prior to the start of the Sam¿s Town 300 on Saturday, March 1. The silent auction will feature NASCAR memorabilia and autographed collectibles, including pit crew shirts and a helmet autographed by the Coca-Cola Family of Drivers.

            NASCAR Winston Cup Series drivers who have agreed to participate in this year's auction include: Las Vegas' Kurt Busch, Jimmy Spencer, Dave Blaney and Greg Biffle.

            NASCAR Busch Series drivers scheduled to participate include: Scott Wimmer, Scott Riggs, Mike Wallace, 1994 NASCAR Busch Series champion David Green, Brian Vickers, Bobby Hamilton Jr., Damon Lusk and Chase Montgomery.

Due to sponsor commitments, reigning NASCAR Winston Cup Series champion Tony Stewart will make an early appearance at Sam's Town Live! from 4:45-5 p.m.  (Doors will open at 4:30 p.m.)

The evening also will include a concert by country music star Chris Chitsey, an appearance by the USAF Thunderbirds and a silent auction.           

The auction has become a popular part of Las Vegas' NASCAR weekend and last year raised $89,000 for needy children of southern Nevada.

            Doors will open at 4:30 p.m., with Chris Chitsey's concert scheduled for 5 p.m., followed by the auction at 6 p.m.

            Tickets are $35 and are currently available online at www.tickets.com. Upon availability, tickets also may be purchased at the Sam¿s Town Live! box office the day of the auction. 

On Dec. 3, 2002, the Las Vegas Chapter of Speedway Children's Charities distributed  $228,000 to 31 local causes (including St. Jude's Chidren's Ranch, Make-A-Wish Foundation and Amerindian) which directly impact the lives of children in the Las Vegas and southern Nevada region at its annual Christmas Tree Lighting and Grant Distribution Ceremony.

            Speedway Children's Charities (www.speedwaycharities.org) is a non-profit foundation based in Charlotte, N.C. that distributes funds to charities and foundations providing medical, emotional and social services to children in need.  Founded in 1984 by O. Bruton Smith, chief executive officer of Speedway Motorsports, Inc., Speedway Children's Charities has grown into a national foundation with chapters located at each of the six Speedway Motorsports Inc., facilities, including Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif., Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway, Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte, N.C., Texas Motor Speedway in Dallas-Ft. Worth and Atlanta Motor Speedway. Each chapter's objective is to assist as many children as possible.