Classic has 57,000 reasons to continue kickball game

A CHARITY kickball game could become a regular fixture on the Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic calendar after it raised more than $57,000 for children’s cancer.

Premier Speedway general manager David Mills said the Royal Children’s Hospital was “gobsmacked” with the success of the Kick-It Down Under game and auction on Sunday.

Mills, American sprintcar driver Shane Stewart and Oval Express Magazine’s Michelle Jordison presented a cheque at the Royal Children’s Hospital on Tuesday.

“It was a very proud moment in a way. They were legitimately blown away with the amount,” Mills said.

“We set what we thought was an achievable goal of $15,000 at the start. The Royal Children’s was hopeful of $20,000 as a figure.

“Speedway people and the people of Warrnambool should be proud of  what we achieved in two hours.”

The Kick-It Down Under charity game was the first of its kind held by the Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation outside the US.

Jeff Gordon was a NASCAR champion who is a strong charity supporter.

Mills said the success of the inaugural game and auction had prompted discussion about it being an ongoing part of the Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic weekend.

“I am confident it will be a stable part of the weekend, whether it’s annually or biennially,” he said. “The Jeff Gordon Foundation was really blown away with it.”

Mills, who thanked Warrnambool Hockey Association for the use of its Cramer Street fields, said Australia’s sprintcar stars defeated America 6-4.

“It was a lot of fun and the game disintegrated into a water fight at one stage,” he said.

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