Peering out from inside a performance vehicle, the surrounding scenery passes in a blur. With each curve of the race course, the seat hugs your body. The hum of the engine surrounds you, as the force of the finely tuned sports car propels you faster and faster around the track. At speeds over 100mph, you have never felt more alive. But don’t expect your alarm clock to wake you. This is no dream. This one-of-a-kind experience is very real and attainable at the Second Annual Corvettes Racing for the Cure September 21-22, 2018.

Sponsored by Gerber Collision and Glass and The Ridge Motorsport Park in Shelton, Corvettes Racing for the Cure is a charity fundraising event that brings together performance sports car enthusiasts and the public to raise donations for The American Cancer Society. “We have to come together and see if we can find a cure,” says Dr. Tom Duncan, Corvettes Racing for the Cure event creator and coordinator. Duncan is a member of Corvettes De Olympia and a family practice physician in Tumwater. He sees cancer too often, and decided it was time to do something more about it. That’s when he came up with Corvettes Racing for the Cure.

For a modest donation, members of the public can a take a ride around the track alongside experienced drivers. At the event, there will be a wide variety of performance vehicles. “We anticipate anywhere between 30 and 60 cars,” says Duncan. Though the vehicle list has yet to be finalized, Duncan says the public should expect many different sports cars to be available, including Mustangs, BMWs, Porches, and of course, Corvettes.

Olympia Federal Savings Corvettes Racing For The Cure Ken Pekola Nice Day
Experience the hum of the horsepower under the hood of a finely tuned sports car at Corvettes Race for the Cure. Ken Pekola is a proud Corvette owner. Photo credit: Ken Pekola

Have you ever dreamed you could be the one inside that vehicle as it whips around the track? It is just as simple as heading out to the event, making a donation, and hopping in their car for an exhilarating 15-20 minute ride.

“There isn’t a person out there that hasn’t been affected by cancer, either themselves or through a friend or family member,” says Ken Pekola, fellow member of Corvettes De Olympia and commercial relationship manager with Olympia Federal Savings. Pekola is involved with a number of events with the car club and is excited to be a part of Corvettes Racing for the Cure. “We are all part of the Corvette Family, and we want to do things to help each other, help our community, and enjoy cars while we are at it,” he explains.

In addition to performance vehicle rides around the track, Duncan has set up a go-kart rally where 15 teams will race and compete. The go-kart course at the Ridge Motorsports Park is a 1/5 scale course of the racetrack. Two or four man teams will race on September 21, and the top three teams will receive trophies. Entrance fees and donations raised by the teams will also go to the American Cancer Society.  The go-kart team that raises the most donations will receive a grand prize.

Olympia Federal Savings Corvettes Racing For The Cure Tom Duncan With Ron H
Corvettes Racing for the Cure Founder Tom Duncan catches up with Ron Helzer of the Corvette Racing Team. Photo courtesy: Tom Duncan

Additionally, Duncan is in talks with The Shelton Aviators Club to provide flights over Puget Sound. For donations, hobby pilots will take individuals on 30 minute flights checking out the beautiful scenery of the area like Lake Cushman and spectacular background views of the Olympia Mountains.

There is nothing like the exhilaration of experiencing a performance vehicle ride.  “My car reaches speeds of about 140 mph or 150 mph down the front straight,” says Duncan. Racing for the Cure offers the rare opportunity to participate in one of these rides.

2018 is only the second year for this event, but it has already garnered a huge level of interest and excitement. The first event, held last October, was more of a test lap to gauge interest. It raked in $1,700 by word of mouth alone. This year’s event will be much bigger, with a goal to match – $25,000. That goal is not too far off, with all the sponsor support, donations and pledges, the event has raised a little over $18,000 so far.

“There has been a phenomenal amount of support from the community and local businesses,” says Duncan. “A lot of local businesses have really gotten behind us,” he adds.  Courtesy Auto Service and Tire of Lacey and Pratt & Miller have also been big sponsors of the event.

Olympia Federal Savings Corvettes Racing For The Cure Ken Pekola New to Classic
Brand new to classic and everything in between, Corvettes De Olympia is a club that appreciates a sweet ride. Photo credit: Ken Pekola

“We are looking at continuing this event,” says Duncan, “where it becomes an annual tradition in the South Sound.”

Whether you are checking off your bucket list, want to gift your husband or wife an awesome birthday experience, or you just want to support a great cause, put this event on your calendar.

The Second Annual Corvettes Racing for the Cure takes place September 21 – 22 at The Ridge Motorsports Park at 1060 West Eells Hill Road in Shelton. If you cannot attend the event, but would still like to make a donation, you can donate online through Corvettes Racing for the Cure, which goes directly to the American Cancer Society.


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