Saturday, May 16, 2009

Kyle Petty's Charity Ride in Tennessee

Kyle Petty's charity ride made a stopover in Nashville last night. They started out this morning with a breakfast stop at the Brentwood Chick-Fil-A (20 minutes south of Nashville). I went out to see him and the rest of the riders. Unfortunately, they were not greeted with Chamber of Commerce weather. Its been raining pretty hard off and on all day. They all showed up this morning in their rain slicks riding gear.

But everyone that I got to talk to still had high spirits. Today is the last day of the ride. From middle Tennessee, the route was going to take them to Greensboro, North Carolina and the Victory Junction Gang Camp.

I got to meet Kyle again and get his autograph. I also took with me the souvenir program from the 1978 Music City 420 at Nashville Speedway. That race was my first Cup event to attend, and I got to go into the pits after the race. I met Kyle for the first time that night. He was just a crewman on the 43. We were both teenagers back then.

Program - Kyle's autograph from way back when is a bit hard to read. He used a ball point pen I must have borrowed from someone. I didn't know about Sharpies back then - if there was such a thing.

Close-up of it.

I also got to meet and chat a bit with Pattie Petty (Kyle's wife), his daughter Montgomery Lee (who turns out lives about 5 minutes from me), Harry Gant, Robert D. Raiford (from John Boy & Billy show), and Hershel Walker.

The Rev. Franklin Graham opened the breakfast with a prayer. I know he is a biker, but I don't know if he was just in down for this event or if he's been along for the full ride.

Matt Kenseth was not with the riders as he had to return to Charlotte for the All-Star race. I also thought golf Davis Love III might be with them, but he may well have parted ways with them for a weekend tournament.

Kyle's bike

Kyle at his bike getting ready to saddle up

Pattie's bike

Pattie getting ready to roll out.

Hershel Walker's bike

Pretty fun way to start - if rainy - Saturday.


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