CHARLOTTE, NC -- Officials of the Chiquita Classic announced that NASCAR legend and Hall of Famer Richard Petty will serve as the Honorary Chairman for the third edition of the Nationwide Tour event that is scheduled for Sept. 24-30 at The Club at Longview in Greater Charlotte, N.C.
"We are honored to join forces with NASCAR legend Richard Petty to raise thousands of dollars for Charlotte area charities," said Fernando Aguirre, Chiquita Chairman and CEO. "When seeking an honorary chairman for the Chiquita Classic, we quickly learned there was no one better than The King himself given his long commitment to charitable causes such as the Victory Junction."
The honorary chairman serves as an important symbol for the Tournament's charitable efforts as the Chiquita Classic raises thousands of dollars for local charities through its charity ticket program and other philanthropic initiatives. Petty exemplifies this as charity and community are deeply engrained within the Petty family and Richard Petty Motorsports. Through the Petty Family Foundation, the family's legacy of success and vision of humanity is carried out.
"Chiquita's commitment to giving back to the local community is something that really impressed me and I am thrilled to be the Honorary Chairman of the Chiquita Classic," stated Petty. "The chance to highlight North Carolina and the Charlotte area, hometown to so many of the individuals and families that are involved in NASCAR, to national and international audiences is a great opportunity. Like the Chiquita organization, Charlotte and its suburbs are full of wonderful people who are very involved in and proud of their communities and I am certain the Chiquita Classic will be a wonderful event."
Known to many simply as "The King," Richard Petty is the most decorated driver in the history of NASCAR racing, winning a record 200 career races and seven NASCAR Cup championships during his illustrious career. After 1,184 races that spanned three decades, "The King" is far from retired. Today Petty is as busy as ever, and spends much of his time overseeing the operations of Richard Petty Motorsports. He has also been elected to the National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame, International Motorsports Hall of Fame, North Carolina Auto Racing Hall of Fame, and also the North Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame. He also serves as Chairman of the North Carolina Motorsports Association.
"We are really excited to welcome an icon such as Richard Petty to the Nationwide Tour and the Chiquita Classic," said Nationwide Tour president Bill Calfee. "It is a great honor to have 'The King' involved as Honorary Chairman. His participation will do a great deal to enhance the tournament's profile and its impact on the Charlotte community and the benefitting charities."
The Chiquita Classic will feature a field of 156 players competing over 72 holes of stroke play for a purse of $550,000. The Club at Longview is a 7,065-yard layout designed by legend Jack Nicklaus which opened for play in 2003 with a guided tour of the golf course by the architect himself. It is located in the Charlotte suburb of Weddington, about 15 miles from downtown. A pro-am will be played on Wednesday, Sept. 26th.