K&N Gives Waibel's Kids A Taste of Racing at Gator Nationals
Jeremy Waibel, son of Division 2 Hall of Fame member Jimmy Waibel, says his family has been in the racing business for over 50 years. "I am a second generation driver and my children will soon follow in this pattern," says Waibel. In addition to driving a '69 Camaro in NHRA Stock Eliminator competition, Waibel is also a 4th degree Master Black Belt in the art and science of Tae Kwon Do. "I have been a practitioner of this sport for almost 25 years. I own and operate a Tae Kwon Do school in Lakeland, Florida. From this school we launched a satellite program at the Florida Baptist Children's home where we teach a few times per week." There is no charge for this program since Waibel knows that the majority of these children would never be able to participate in something like this.
K&N and Jeremy Waibel Share the Experience of AC Delco Gator Nationals
The Florida Baptist Children's home is a place where less fortunate children can have a stable, loving environment where they can develop into productive members of society. "I became involved with the Florida Baptist Children's home through my church and my race car," says Waibel. "I was asked to speak as a professional race car driver and martial artist at the church sponsored 'Camp Extreme.' As soon as I got there, I knew I had to do something to help these children." Soon afterward, Waibel began his Tae Kwon Do program and the kids loved it.
The Children Joined Jeremy Waibel for Dinner in the Pits
Waibel was able to give these kids yet another once in a lifetime experience when he got the idea to take them to the AC Delco Gator Nationals. "My race car has been sponsored by K&N for many years, so I brought up the idea of taking the kids to the Nationals and left it in their hands. We were so excited when we received the tickets from K&N and realized how many kids would get to go."
The children in Waibel's group are ages 4 - 17 and come from many different backgrounds. Some are abused mentally, physically, and emotionally and others have been witness to terrible things. "When we got to the Nationals, you would have thought that it was Christmas morning," says Waibel. "The children were so thrilled to be there. They got to meet drivers like Warren Johnson, Erika Enders, Melanie Troxel, Tommy Johnson Jr., Doug Patrick, Scott Helms, Alan Wade, Jay and Shelly Payne, Jeg Coughlin, and Chris Turnage. I think that they enjoyed hanging out with Peter Biondo the most. Here was this untouchable race car driver, racing though the woods with them. It was an amazing week!"
"K&N has not only made an impact in the lives of some children that otherwise may have never been exposed to this sport except on TV, but in the lives of everyone that was around our team that weekend," says Waibel. "They all knew that K&N was the reason we were able to attend."
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