CONCORD, N.C. -- On Tuesday, Kyle Larson announced the establishment of the Kyle Larson Foundation, which the driver has launched to better serve today’s youth, families and communities in need through hands-on support.
The driver of the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE for Hendrick Motorsports wanted to lead by example off the track and serve as a role model for school-aged children from all different backgrounds. The Kyle Larson Foundation aims to bring people together in conjunction with its partner organizations to help communities and people in need.
“I’ve wanted to have a foundation for a while now, probably the last four or five years,” Larson said. “I just never really felt like there was anything that really stood out to me, so now with everything that I kind of went through last year and all the support that I got from different people and organizations and communities, I wanted to give back and support them as well as supporting the communities that they help out, too.”
Although the concept of a charitable foundation had been on Larson’s mind for some time, he was motivated to move forward by working with Tony Sanneh, who founded The Sanneh Foundation in Minneapolis. After joining Sanneh for a food drive last year, Larson said he saw first-hand what the power of a foundation can do for a community.
The Sanneh Foundation and the Urban Youth Racing School in Philadelphia are beneficiaries of the Kyle Larson Foundation, which will also work closely with Hendrick Cares.
Since 2017, Larson has volunteered with the Urban Youth Racing School and lauds the program for its educational initiatives and mentorship to help children explore and strive for STEM-related careers. Hendrick Cares, the corporate social responsibility program of Hendrick Automotive Group, also has been instrumental in providing support to local communities through food drives and school funding grants.
To launch his foundation, Larson is introducing the “Drive for 5” initiative with a fundraising goal of $500,000. The money will go toward supporting at least five students with scholarships via the UYRS, providing daily meals for at least five families per day through The Sanneh Foundation, and supporting at least five needy communities with Hendrick Cares school grants.
Along with working with these groups off the track, Larson is bringing his “Drive for 5” initiative to the virtual starting grid. For the first five races of the 2021 eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series, the 28-year-old driver will sport paint schemes highlighting the Kyle Larson Foundation and its partners. The iRacing season kicks off Wednesday night at 8 p.m. ET on FS1.
"It means a lot to give some recognition to the Urban Youth Racing School, The Sanneh Foundation and Hendrick Cares," Larson said. "There should be lots of people tuned in to watch, so it’s a great platform to introduce the foundation, get it out there and get people to learn more about it."
To kick off the “Drive for 5,” Larson has pledged a personal donation of $5 for every NASCAR Cup Series lap he completes this season and will contribute another $5,000 for every top-five finish he earns. Through just six races, he has already pledged more than $22,000.
To learn more, visit www.kylelarsonfoundation.org.