The Kyle Petty Charity Ride Across America, one of the most successful and popular charity rides in the country, today announced the route for its 23rd annual motorcycle trek. For the first time in almost a decade, the Ride led by former NASCAR driver and NBC Sports racing analyst Kyle Petty, will travel across the Pacific Northwest.
With Manheim, North America's leading provider of used vehicle services, as returning presenting sponsor, the Ride will leave Portland, Oregon, on May 13 and arrive in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on May 19, covering eight states in seven days. Petty will lead 200 bikers on the weeklong, 2,400-mile route to raise funds and awareness for Victory Junction - a camp dedicated to providing life-changing camping experiences for children with chronic or life-threatening illnesses.
What started out as Petty and a small group of friends riding together for fun in 1995, has grown into one of the most successful and popular charity rides in the country. This year, more than 20 first-time riders will join the dedicated team of men and women riding for the cause, along with new sponsors and a continued sense of passion.
"It's pretty straightforward: every single mile we ride is for one cause, and that is to send chronically ill children to camp at Victory Junction at no cost to their families," said Petty. "The Ride is an enriching experience for everyone involved, and this year we'll be riding through some spectacular parts of the country like Mount Rushmore, and for the very first time the Columbia River Gorge."
The Ride will see many of our country's historic landmarks including Yellowstone and Badlands National Parks; Bighorn National Forest; and the iconic Harley-Davidson Museum, the birthplace of the all-American motorcycle manufacturing company. Emblematic of the American open road, riders will also take in roadside attractions, including the world's largest ball of twine rolled by one man in Darwin, Minnesota.
Fans are encouraged to come support the cause and greet riders at one of the Ride's seven overnight stops or daily pit stops. Spectators along the route may also purchase memorabilia or contribute to the Ride's "Small Change. Big Impact." program, which accepts donations at each stop.
23rd Anniversary Kyle Petty Charity Ride Across America Schedule:
(Information about scheduled pit stops can be found on the Ride's Facebook page.)
- Day 1, Saturday, May 13 - Portland, Oregon to Walla Walla, Washington
- Day 2, Sunday, May 14 - Walla Walla, Washington to Missoula, Montana
- Day 3, Monday, May 15 - Missoula, Montana to Cody, Wyoming
- Day 4, Tuesday, May 16 - Cody, Wyoming to Deadwood, South Dakota
- Day 5, Wednesday, May 17 - Deadwood, South Dakota to Mitchell, South Dakota
- Day 6, Thursday, May 18 - Mitchell, South Dakota to Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Day 7, Friday, May 19 - Minneapolis, Minnesota to Milwaukee, Wisconsin
As a result of the Ride, 7,985 children have attended Victory Junction at no cost to their families. Last year alone, the Ride raised more than $1 million, sending 100 children to camp. Victory Junction has served as the Ride's primary beneficiary since its establishment by Petty and his family in 2004 in honor of his late son, Adam.
This year's Ride will feature several celebrity riders, including:
- NASCAR Hall of Famer and seven-time champion Richard Petty
- NASCAR legends Harry Gant, Hershel McGriff and Donnie Allison
- Former NFL great and ESPN's 2016 Coaches Poll greatest college football player of all time, Herschel Walker
- Heisman Trophy winner (1980) and Super Bowl champion (XXII) George Rogers
- NBC Sports NASCAR personalities Rick Allen and Rutledge Wood
- Harley-Davidson Museum president, Bill Davidson, who comes from a long list of Harley-Davidson greats starting with his great grandfather who founded the company.
"As we travel to new parts of our country - or ones we haven't seen in a while - the Ride brings with it a passion for sharing the great work of Victory Junction and a comradery that can't be matched. That's what makes it one of the most popular motorcycle rides in the country," said Kyle's father Richard Petty.
The 2017 Ride is made possible by presenting sponsor Manheim, as well as Coca-Cola, Harley-Davidson Motor Company, FCA Fleet, Racing Electronics, WinCraft Racing, FLUIDYNE Racing Products, Petty Family Foundation, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Headbands of Hope, Piedmont Moving Systems, ArticBlu, Select-A-Vision and Goody's.
"Giving back to the community is a core value of Manheim, so we're thrilled once again to be supporting Victory Junction and the children who camp there," said Janet Barnard, president, Cox Automotive Inventory Solutions. "Our teams are excited to welcome the Ride at two of our operating locations, Manheim Portland and Manheim Minneapolis, and offering their local support to this worthwhile cause."
To keep up with Petty and the riders live, follow along on social media:
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/kpcharityride
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/
kpcharityride and www.instagram.com/kylepetty
- Twitter: www.twitter.com/kpcharityride
For more information about the 23rd Annual Kyle Petty Charity Ride Across America or to make a donation, please visit www.kylepettycharityride.com.