Photo by Brian Cleary
Foundation Honors Longtime Supporters Through Two Annual Awards
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (Jan. 23, 2020) – Veteran race car driver Ryan Briscoe was named the recipient of the fourth annual Austin Hatcher Foundation for Pediatric Cancer Humanitarian Award on Thursday at Daytona International Speedway. The award, presented by Austin Hatcher Foundation President Amy Jo Osborn, honors individuals for their efforts in helping the foundation provide essential services to young cancer patients and their families.
Briscoe’s efforts throughout 2019, when he was a driver for Chip Ganassi Racing, supported the Austin Hatcher Foundation’s official status as a “Proud Charity” of the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA). Those efforts included participation in the foundation’s acclaimed Diversionary Therapy program, which includes visits to children’s hospitals.
Briscoe was heavily involved with the foundation during the 2019 season-ending race, the Motul Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta in Braselton, Georgia. He took part in a Diversionary Therapy visit to Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite Hospital; he also helped raise more than $27,000 through an at-track fan auction of racing memorabilia.
"I’ve had the pleasure of working with the Austin Hatcher Foundation for the last couple of years, and the work they do to support children fighting cancer, as well as the families of those children, cannot be understated,” Briscoe said.
“I have two little girls, and I cannot imagine what it would be like to watch them fight for their lives. That’s what makes the Austin Hatcher Foundation so wonderful. They help families focus solely on what matters most: getting their child stronger and healthier. I look forward to working with and helping the Austin Hatcher Foundation raise money and awareness in the future. I am humbled by this honor."
The 2020 IMSA season opens this weekend with the Rolex 24 At DAYTONA. Briscoe, from Sydney, Australia – a successful veteran of both IMSA and IndyCar car competition – will serve as a new driver with the defending champion Cadillac team of Wayne Taylor Racing.
The list of previous award winners includes other accomplished drivers: Joey Hand in 2017 and brothers Jordan and Ricky Taylor 2018. Corvette Racing was last year’s recipient.
“Ryan is an outstanding racer with an incredible personality,” Osborn said. “That combination has made him a huge hit with not only motorsports fans, but also young cancer patients and their families. Ryan’s smile is contagious, and it has been a joy to have him at hospital visits for several years. We are extremely grateful for support like Ryan’s and support from so many others. His assistance to the Austin Hatcher Foundation makes him a most-deserving award recipient.”
Also Thursday, Osborn presented the Platinum Club Member Award to IMSA, a Platinum Club Member since 2009. This award – accepted by IMSA Vice President of Marketing and Business Operations David Pettit – recognizes a landmark cumulative donation total of $3.1 million to the Austin Hatcher Foundation.
"It's an honor for IMSA to have this partnership with the Austin Hatcher Foundation," Pettit said. "The foundation has great people, doing important work on a daily basis on behalf of children and families battling a dreaded disease. We take great pride in supporting their cause as much as possible. We also take great pride in accepting this award."
“Our relationship with IMSA goes back to the beginning of our foundation in 2006, and it has been a large portion of the bedrock we have built upon,” Osborn said. “We are indeed a ‘Proud Charity’ of IMSA.”