Indy Lights Driver Trio Highlight National Autism Awareness Week At Alabama Autism Health Center
“Our students really appreciate the attention they get from these Racing for Kids Drivers,” offered Linda Baker, Chief Operating Officer, Glenwood Autism & Behavioral Health Center, Birmingham, Alabama, where three Racing for Kids drivers from the Indy Lights Series visited Thursday.
The trio of drivers, which included Shelby Blackstock, Belardi Racing Team, Dalton Kellett and Nico Jamin of Andretti Autosport, helped mark National Autism Awareness Week by entertaining 100 kids and adults at the Center.
The drivers engaged the crowd with lively stories about life behind the wheel of a 200 miles per hour racecar. They also answered a myriad of questions, signed autographs, posed for pictures, and handed out Racing for Kids baseball caps and other racing memorabilia.
For Blackstock and Kellett it was their second consecutive pre-race stop at the highly regarded Alabama facility. Local TV affiliates of CBS and FOX covered the driver visit adding an aura of celebrity to the 90 minute event.
According to COO Baker, studies show that autistic male students especially benefit from the experience of a male celebrity visiting with them. “They really enjoy the special attention they get from these drivers,” she said.