Pat Summitt and Trevor Bayne stand in front of the car Bayne will be driving at the Food City 250 (WVLT)
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (UT Release) - Tennessee Head Women’s Basketball Coach Emeritus Pat Summitt, Knoxville-native and NASCAR driver Trevor Bayne, and the orange No. 60 “We Back Pat” car were popular attractions Wednesday night, as the annual Food City Race Night was held at the Knoxville Expo Center.
Summitt, who will serve as the grand marshal of Friday night’s Food City 250 Nationwide Series Race at Bristol Motor Speedway, was recognized at the event. The race’s presenting sponsor, Food City, also announced it was donating $1,000 to the Pat Summitt Foundation Fund, which is a fund of the East Tennessee Foundation.
The Pat Summitt Foundation’s mission is to make grants to nonprofits that provide 1) education and awareness of Alzheimer’s, its onset and treatment, 2) support services to patients, their families and caregivers, and 3) research to treat, prevent, cure, and ultimately eradicate this disease.
On July 13, Bayne, along with YourRaceCar.com, The Pat Summitt Foundation, Roush Fenway Racing, K-VA-T Food Stores/Food City and Bristol Motor Speedway announced the “We Back Pat” Racing promotion and unveiled the popular vehicle. The promotion is designed to raise national awareness of The Pat Summitt Foundation’s mission and contribution to the fight against Alzheimer’s disease.
On Wednesday night, YourRaceCar.com presented $8,981 from sales of “We Back Pat” Racing shirts as well as from fans paying to have their names painted on the car for the race.
While Bayne will pilot the No. 60 Roush Fenway “We Back Pat™”-themed Ford Mustang on Friday night, Summitt will be serve as grand marshal and command drivers to “start your engines” in her first visit to the “World’s Fastest Half-Mile.”
Summitt, who stepped down as head coach of the Lady Vols in April of this year, was diagnosed with early on-set dementia, Alzheimer’s type, in August of 2011 and is now the Lady Vols’ head coach emeritus. She is the only basketball coach in NCAA history, and one of three college coaches overall, with 1,000 wins.