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Johnson's 'Helmet of Hope' complete, up for grabs

CONCORD, N.C. (Aug. 20, 2008) – The Jimmie Johnson Foundation Helmet of Hope initiative is complete, with 12 fan- and media-nominated charities adorning the helmet Johnson will wear during the Aug. 31 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.

“We wanted the Helmet of Hope to be about the charities across the country that our fans and media members thought were important and felt deserved exposure,” said Johnson, the two-time reigning Sprint Cup Series champion. “We had a ton of organizations nominated, some we’d all heard of, all the way down to tiny ones that are doing huge things for great causes. We are excited to recognize the selected groups that are making a difference.”

Fans may bid on the one-of-a kind, race-worn helmet at www.ebay.com/jimmiejohnsonfoundation. The auction runs through Tues., Aug. 26 at 11:40 p.m. ET with proceeds benefiting San Diego Habitat for Humanity.

“We’re excited about everything the Foundation is doing and we’re thrilled we brought a new component to the event with the Helmet of Hope,” Johnson said. “We raised over $500,000 last year and are hoping to top that this time around. In addition to raising funds, being able to bring some awareness to other charities is awesome.”

Jimmie and Chandra Johnson announced the Helmet of Hope initiative in June in conjunction with the Second Annual Jimmie Johnson Foundation Golf Tournament and Dinner Auction, which will held Aug. 26-27 in San Diego. The helmet was intended to give race fans and members of the NASCAR family the opportunity to recognize charities of personal significance
Johnson drew two charities each race weekend for six weeks. The logos of 12 winning organizations join the Jimmie Johnson Foundation and San Diego Habitat for Humanity images on the helmet.

The charities featured on Johnson’s Helmet of Hope are: Monarch, Breakthrough Manchester, STEP, Inc., The American Diabetes Association, The Children’s Fund for Glycogen Storage Disease Research, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Alex’s Lemonade Stand, the Nationwide Foundation, Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Classroom Central and CaringBridge.
Proceeds from the golf tournament and dinner auction will benefit San Diego Habitat for Humanity. Four homes currently are being built on the newly created and named Foundation Lane. The Johnsons will be on-site next week to add some finishing touches to the first home and to pass the keys to the new owner, an El Cajon resident.

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