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NASCAR Racer Thanks 49th Precinct After Winning Virginia Race

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Everybody was a winner at this year’s 49th Precinct 9-11 Memorial Run, but a win in Virginia was appreciated much more all the way in the Bronx.

In support of 9-11, New York City, and the 49th Precinct, the cars of NASCAR’s Richard Childress Racing Team placed special decals on their cars commemorating the 10th anniversary of 9-11 as they raced in Richmond, Virginia on Saturday, September 10.

David Hart, who works for RCR, is a longtime friend of 49th Community Affairs Officer Victor DiPierro. In honor of the annual 49th Precinct Lt. Thomas Clesse 5K Memorial Run Commemorating 9-11, which took place on the same day, Hart and RCR donated autographed memorabilia and merchandise to help fund this year’s 10th anniversary run.

DiPierro, who helps organize the run, went home to watch the NASCAR race on TV after the 5K was completed. He was truly touched when Kevin Harvick, RCR’s most popular driver, not only won the race, but thanked DiPierro and the 49th Precinct for providing the decals during his post-race interview.

“I couldn’t believe it when I heard it. To have the best racer of the team actually win the race, and then thank us for support on live television in Virginia was unbelievab­le,” DiPierro said. “It’s an honor to have the RCR team place the decals on their cars. It’s a great honor that they support New York, especially during the 10th anniversary of 9-11.”

The decals, which DiPierro first provided to RCR in 2002, honor those who lost their lives on 9-11, especially the fallen heroes of the NYPD, FDNY and Port Authority Police of New York and New Jersey.

DiPierro first met Hart about eight years ago at a 9-11 fundraiser in Manhattan. Since then, the two have remained close friends and continue to help each other as much as possible.

For the 10th anniversary of 9-11 and the precinct’s memorial run, DiPierro wanted to make it the best 5K yet. After contacting Hart, RCR immediately donated autographed T-shirts of the racing team’s members, pictures, team hats, and authentic gloves worn by the drivers, which were auctioned off on Saturday, September 3 at The Pine Restaurant at 1913 Bronxdale Avenue.

Proceeds from the auction were used to purchase special 9-11 T-shirts for race participants, and all the remaining proceeds, including race participation fees, were donated to the Widows and Orphans of Fallen Police Officers Fund.

“We truly are grateful for everything that David Hart and RCR has done for us,” DiPierro said. “Our 5K was once again a success, and a big part of the reason was because of what RCR provided.”

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