From Tony Veneziano
ST. LOUIS (May 26, 2010) – Kasey Kahne is set to debut the No. 9 Budweiser Armed Forces Ford in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competition at Charlotte Motor Speedway this Memorial Day weekend, and Budweiser’s “Proud to Serve Those Who Serve” campaign is also extending to Kasey Kahne Racing with a special No. 9 Budweiser Armed Forces paint scheme piloted by Joey Saldana in World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series action at The Dirt Track at Charlotte.
Last month at Fort Hood in Killeen, Texas, Budweiser announced its partnership with the USO to honor the men and women of America’s Armed Forces through the “Proud to Serve Those Who Serve” program. Kahne joined representatives from Budweiser and the USO to unveil the special Armed Forces paint scheme that will run at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 30 and at Daytona International Speedway on July 3.
As part of the program, Budweiser and its wholesalers will donate $250,000 throughout the months of May and June to the USO’s Operation Enduring Care program, which was created to meet the recovery needs of wounded service members and their families. The donation will help fund the development of two wounded warrior centers at Walter Reed Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., and Fort Belvoir Community Hospital in Fort Belvoir, Va.
In addition to the on-track efforts of the No. 9 Ford, Budweiser will also utilize Kahne’s own short-track racing team and Saldana to promote the program at a grassroots level through the World of Outlaws series starting on Friday, May 28, at The Dirt Track at Charlotte. The team will continue to run the scheme through July at tracks across the Midwest.
“Joey Saldana and Kasey Kahne Racing have been great ambassadors for us in the World of Outlaws series,” said Brad Brown, senior director, sports marketing, Anheuser-Busch, Inc. “We’re proud to have that continue with the Budweiser’s ‘Proud to Serve Those Who Serve’ campaign. The team is excited to help us honor the men and women of our nation’s Armed Forces throughout the summer at local tracks across America.”
In three seasons at the wheel of the No. 9 Budweiser Sprint Car, Saldana has claimed 29 wins, including four so far in 2010. He is also the defending World of Outlaws Sprint Car Showdown winner at The Dirt Track at Charlotte.
“We don’t often have special paint schemes with our World of Outlaws program, so it will be cool to see Joey and the guys running the Armed Forces sprint car that looks just like my car on the Cup side,” said Kahne. “It’s great that Budweiser is promoting the Armed Forces program with the USO through our short-track team as well. We’re proud to honor the soldiers that protect our country on Memorial Day weekend and help raise awareness of the USO’s Operation Enduring Care.”
Since Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom began, more than 33,000 service members have been wounded in action. Created in 2006, the USO’s Operation Enduring Care program was designed to help meet the recovery needs of injured service members and their families, and to support the medical personnel who care for the wounded, funeral escorts, mortuary personnel and honor guards serving fallen troops.
The USO lifts the spirits of America’s troops and their families by providing a touch of home through centers at airports and military bases around the world, top quality entertainment and innovative programs and services tailored to meet troop needs. The USO also provides critical support to those who need it most, including forward-deployed troops and their families, wounded warriors and their families, and the families of the fallen.
The USO is a private, non-profit organization, not a government agency; it relies on the generosity of donors. In addition to individual donors and other corporate sponsors, the USO is supported by Worldwide Strategic Partners American Airlines, AT&T Inc., BAE Systems, The Boeing Company, Clear Channel Communications, The Coca-Cola Company, Gallery Furniture, Lockheed Martin, Microsoft Corporation, Northrop Grumman Corporation and TriWest Healthcare Alliance, as well as other corporate donors, including the United Way and Combined Federal Campaign (CFC-11381). The USO strives to deliver maximum benefit for troops and their families from every donor dollar. For more information, please visit www.uso.org.
Based in St. Louis, Anheuser‑Busch is the leading American brewer, holding a 48.9 percent share of U.S. beer sales to retailers. The company brews the world’s largest-selling beers, Budweiser and Bud Light. Anheuser‑Busch also owns a 50 percent share in Grupo Modelo, Mexico’s leading brewer. Anheuser‑Busch is a major manufacturer of aluminum cans and has been a leading aluminum recycler for more than 30 years. The company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch InBev, the leading global brewer, and continues to operate under the Anheuser-Busch name and logo. For more information, visit www.anheuser-busch.com.