Wheels of Wellness kicks off Arizona Auction Week

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PHOENIX  – 2009 IndyCar Series Champion Dario Franchitti and Danica Patrick, the first woman to win an IndyCar race, are among the racing greats who will participate in a Legends of Motorsports panel at the 4th annual Wheels of Wellness vintage race car showcase from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Jan. 16, 2011. 

The event, title sponsored by GoDaddy.com, the world’s largest Web hosting provider and top domain name registrar, will also feature Lyn St. James, the first female Indy 500 Rookie of the Year, who will serve as moderator for the panel discussion.  The panel will include such female racing luminaries as Denise McCluggage and Desiré Wilson. Justin Bell, son of the celebrated racing driver Derek Bell, will also attend. These celebrities, racecar owners and sponsors such as GoDaddy.com are donating their time and talents to help raise funds to support programs provided by The Wellness Community – Arizona for teens with cancer and families impacted by cancer.

Over the past four years, Wheels of Wellness has become a much-anticipated gathering of racing luminaries and car aficionados. This year’s special focus on American-built racecars will offer examples of U.S.-built sports racers from the ‘50s and ‘60s, including the rare and beautiful Scarab pictured.  Built and campaigned by Woolworth heir Lance Reventlow, the Scarabs beat the best sports cars from Ferrari, Maserati and Jaguar across the U.S. in the late 1950s.

Rare, vintage motorcycles will also be on display, including a ’91 Ducati/Cagiva Elefant 900. Built entirely from scratch, the Ducati/Cagiva Elefant won the Pharaohs ’91 rally of Egypt and placed second overall in the ’92 Paris-Dakar-LeCap Rally. It was featured in the Guggenheim’s Art of the Motorcycle exhibit, which traveled worldwide from 1998 to 2000, and is currently presented in its Lucky Explorer (Strike) livery.

Exclusive Preview of Women in the Winner’s Circle Exhibit

A special highlight of Wheels of Wellness is an exclusive preview of the Women in the Winner’s Circle Exhibit, which will subsequently travel to the Arizona Science Center and then tour the nation. Presented in partnership with The Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan, the 600-square-foot exhibit documents the extraordinary history and accomplishments of women in motorsports. Included are personal artifacts from significant drivers, an interactive kiosk and informational panels documenting the accomplishments of women drivers in racing since 1903.

Wheels of Wellness benefits The Wellness Community, a national organization that provides more than 100 free programs monthly to cancer survivors and their families. The event will be held on the exquisitely manicured grounds of The Wellness Community-Arizona’s restored 1908 Craftsman-style home and one-acre campus in downtown Phoenix. Epicurean food and imported wine and beer are included with an admission ticket.

Wheels of Wellness kicks off Arizona Auction Week, a series of events that draws car enthusiasts from across the nation and throughout the world to bid on some of the most desirable sports and grand touring cars, historic racecars and muscle cars. The event is the brainchild of a small group of Phoenix and Scottsdale business executives who are avid vintage car collectors and drivers, and whose lives have been touched by cancer.

WHAT:    4th Annual Wheels of Wellness Fundraiser

WHEN:    From 11 am – 3 pm on Sunday, Jan. 16, 2011

WHERE:    The Wellness Community, 360 E. Palm Lane in downtown Phoenix.

GUESTS:    Among the racing greats who will appear at the event are:
•    Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner and 2009/2007 IndyCar Series Champion Dario Franchitti
•     Danica Patrick, the first woman to win an IndyCar race  and star of 2009’s most watched Super Bowl commercial
•    Lyn St. James, the first woman to win the Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year award
•    Noted auto racing driver, journalist, author and photographer Denise McCluggage
•    Desiré Wilson, the only woman in history to win a Grand Prix race (the Aurora series)
•    Justin Bell, FIA GT2 champion, Trans Am Rookie of the Year, correspondent for Jay Leno’s Garage and pit reporter for American Le Mans Series
•    Bobby Rahal, winner of three championships and 24 races in the CART open-wheel series, including the 1986 Indianapolis 500

TICKETS:    Showcase entry tickets before Jan. 13 are $75, with $25 of this amount tax-deductible. (There is limited availability for tickets, so please RSVP as soon as possible.) After Jan. 12, add $25 for registration at the door.

HISTORIC:     Attendees will have the opportunity to stroll among a world-class display of more than two

RACECARS:    dozen rare, exquisite vintage race cars, including a showcase focused on American-built specials such as:

  • Lance Reventlow’s dominating 1958 Scarab MkI (chassis #1)
  • An original 1962 Chaparral I (Hall/Sharp Road America 500 winner)
  • 1958 Echidna, 1 of 3 ever built (’59 SCCA national champion)
  • 1962 Ol’Yeller VIII (built by Max Balchowsky)

Other historic race cars on display include:

  • 1951 "Fabulous" Hudson Hornet stock car
  • 1963 Ford Galaxie stock car (Dan Gurney’s Riverside winner)
  • 1964 McLaren-Elva MkIA  (Cro-Sal Special)
  • 1971 Alfa Romeo Tipo 33/3 (5th at the Targa Florio)
  • 1976 IROC Camaro (A.J. Foyt)

CONTACT:    To purchase tickets, please contact Stephanie DiStefano at 602-712-1006 or sdistefano@twccaz.org. For more information about the event and/or to purchase tickets online, please visit wheelsofwellness.org.

SPONSORS:     Title Sponsor: GoDaddy.com, the world’s largest Web hosting provider and top domain name registrar
    Spirit Sponsors: Barrett-Jackson, Neiman Marcus
    Courage Sponsors: Hagerty Insurance Agency,  Discount Tires, The Stables
Vintage Motorsport Magazine; Arrowlane Racing, Restoration and Fabrication; David Bull Publishing; Copperstate 1000; Women in the Winner’s Circle Foundation; Grand Touring Cars; and Edenholm Motor Group.

WHO:    The Wellness Community (TWC) provides people living with cancer and their loved ones with the other half of cancer care – education, support and hope. In 2009, TWC-Arizona hosted close to 13,000 visits from people with cancer and their loved ones at its professionally-led support groups, educational workshops, nutrition and exercise seminars and stress reduction classes. More than 100 free programs are offered monthly at a beautifully restored home and one-acre campus in Phoenix.

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