NASHVILLE, Tenn. – On Saturday morning at Nashville Superspeedway, the Urban Youth Racing School (UYRS) announced the Grand Prix of Philadelphia with Kyle Larson and Friends will take place on Friday, July 22.
The event will be ahead of the Pocono Raceway weekend. Hendrick Motorsports has been a long-time supporter of the UYRS and is one of the partners for the race with Larson.
"I’m just really excited to be able to bring the Grand Prix to the inner city and invite a lot of our fellow drivers to be a part of it," Larson said. "Anthony and Michelle (Martin) continue to do great things. It only gets better and better and I like being a part of it. I've had a great relationship with them since I've basically been (NASCAR) Cup Series racing and have grown into being much closer to them the last few years and a lot of the kids, too.
Larson, the reigning NASCAR Cup Series champion and driver of the No. 5 HendrickCars.com Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, visited the school with his Cup championship trophy last year. He also has purchased two racing simulators for the school and conducted virtual visits in addition to in-person ones.
"Kyle (Larson) has been absolutely phenomenal for us," Anthony Martin said. "We’ve been working with Kyle since I think 2017 and Kyle has been very supportive. I come from the sports marketing world and let me say this to you: there’s talkers and there’s doers. Kyle is definitely a doer, so we really appreciate that at the Urban Youth Racing School."
Developing a close relationship with the students of the school has been a rewarding aspect for Larson.
"There’s been a few different times where I’ll get a phone call from Anthony at 6:00 p.m. or something and it’s a couple of the kids asking me how to get around a certain track on iRacing or something," Larson said.
"In the times that I’ve been to their school, just chatting with some of the kids who are really into the driving part of it - who do maybe race go-karts or something and are looking for the next steps and are trying to navigate in what I feel like based on the region that they live in, what would be the best route to go. Just having a close relationship with them, as well as the kids, has been really neat for me."
The UYRS was established in Philadelphia in 1998 by Anthony Martin, whose passion for motorsports led him to create the school. The nonprofit organization is headquartered in Philadelphia and is dedicated to exposing inner city youth from the ages of 8-18 to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) career opportunities in the motorsports industry through training, education and on-track driving experience. According to its website, the UYRS has impacted the lives of over 7,500 at risk youth.