This Wednesday, July 18, the “HardLuck Tour” is coming to Thunder Road. The track has agreed to host the Accessible Racing training program that gives disabled U.S. military veterans the chance to experience high-performance auto racing.
The program was co-founded by Brian Hanaford, the son of Thunder Road legend Harold “Hard Luck” Hanaford, and is part of Adaptive Motorsports & Wellness. It uses auto racing to honor those who have served while helping them overcome physical and mental boundaries. Participants begin their training on a virtual driving simulator modified with hand controls. Select veterans eventually get to pilot a modified AM&W race car on actual tracks.
Wednesday’s event is the second round in the HardLuck Tour Northeast Qualifier series. An introductory “chalk talk” will be followed by a ride-along program before veterans progress to an oval track driving experience. Instructors for Wednesday’s program include Northeast racing legend Dave Dion along with Joey Laquerre, the winningest driver in the history of Thunder Road.
Participating veterans include Luis Rosa-Valentin of Annapolis, Maryland, a triple-limb amputee; Cody Evans of Speedwell, TN, a double above-the-limb amputee; Tony Wood of Exeter, NH, who had a near-death experience in combat; and Albert Bucharelli of Belmont, NH, a 93-year-old single-leg amputee and veteran of World War II.
“We’re pleased to be able to give these veterans the opportunity for this experience,” Thunder Road owners Cris Michaud and Pat Malone said in a joint statement. “They clearly gave a lot in service to their country, and it’s a privilege to be a part of helping to give something back.”
For more information, contact Brian Hanaford at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Adaptive Motorports & Wellness page on Facebook.