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Dec 10, 2015

​Roadracing World Action Fund Tops $1.5 Million

Chris Ulrich (18) raised money and awareness for the Roadracing World Action Fund by giving rides on his GEICO Suzuki GSX-R1000 two-seat Superbike November 29, 2015, at Auto Club Speedway. Photo by

The Roadracing World Action Fund began back in 2001 with John Ulrich’s call to action and a modest goal – to get soft barriers deployed at the next AMA Pro race, five weeks away. Within a few weeks, $104,000 was raised and that goal was met. What that original campaign showed was that it could be done, and that we didn’t have to wait for injuries to be prevented and lives saved. And it helped to begin a movement with a loftier goal--to make soft barriers deployed in front of hard walls the standard and the norm for racing in this country.

As additional soft barriers were deployed at racetracks across the country, more and more racers told of being “saved” by soft barriers after crashing, often including the words, “I wouldn’t be here talking to you if it weren’t for…” Thanks to soft barriers, they had survived crashes that could have easily taken a tragic turn back in the day, when haybales were an afterthought and it was normal for riders to slide into unpadded walls, steel barriers and embankments.

The Roadracing World Action Fund’s mission is to help prevent racetrack injuries. By demonstrating soft barriers in deployments at racetracks across the U.S. over these years, we’ve been able to educate the public on motorcycle racing safety, and what we have all witnessed is a change of attitude within the paddock toward safety. We all know that it can be done. And, also, to make no excuses--we need to insist on safety.

Donations to the Roadracing World Action Fund, a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization, have now topped the $1.5 million milestone. With $1,468,481.78 designated for road racing and $124,172.99 for dirt track, the grand total raised now stands at $1,592,654.77.

2015 Fundraisers

Each year since 2005, Thanksgiving weekend at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California has been the time of year for Chris Ulrich’s Two-Up Superbike Fundraiser. At this year’s Sunday-only event held in conjunction with a Fastrack Riders track day weekend, Ulrich gave rides to 36 passengers, covering 87 laps – around 200 miles – on his GEICO Suzuki GSX-R1000. The event raised $3,145 including $1,000 donated by long-time event host Fastrack Riders and another $200 from racer Tony Serra, who attended the event but did not take a two-up ride. The grand total raised over 11 years now stands at $53,405.

Pirelli donated tickets for the World Superbike round at Laguna Seca in July with the proceeds going directly to the Roadracing World Action Fund. This is the third year in a row that Pirelli has sponsored the fundraiser for the WSB tickets, with $2,729 raised in 2013, $2,400 in 2014, and $4,280 in 2015. Pirelli has helped raise a total of $12,475 for the Roadracing World Action Fund through various fundraising projects and donations since 2007.

The fourth annual Broken Wing Benefit raised $7,001 for the Roadracing World Action Fund. The event debuted in 2012, raising $6,818.20; year two, 2013, $6,600 was raised; and $7,000 more was raised in 2014. The event's four-year grand total now stands at $27,419.20.

Midwest Track Days held its first Chili Cookoff fundraiser Sept 5, 2015 at NCM Motorsports Park, declaring Ashley Rackovan the winner while raising $5,323 for soft barriers at the new track.

Performance Riding Experience (P.R.E.) held a fundraising event which included a catered dinner and live auction at VIR on the weekend of June 26 -28, and which raised $4,000 for the Roadracing World Action Fund. This is P.R.E.’s second year of fundraising at VIR, but P.R.E. principals had been involved in RWAF fundraising even before starting the relatively new organization, raising more than $90,000 for soft barrier deployment over several years.

The M1GP 24-Hour Charity Race invites participants to donate to the charity of their choice. The annual event on the kart track at Willow Springs Raceway has resulted in nearly $1,000 in donations to the Roadracing World Action Fund. Gordon Pull sent in the 2015 donation ($370) for his team, writing, “On behalf of the ‘If This Is GROM, I Don’t Want To Be Right’ team, thank you for helping provide soft barriers around the country to help keep us racers safe. See you at the races.” continues to raise money for the Roadracing World Action Fund through its program of matching contributions, dollar for dollar. This year’s contributions total $4,916, bringing the grand total to $11,777 raised by the company since 2011.

In Memory of…

Donations made in memory of departed CVMA and WERA West racer Joanna Bitter came from Steven Engerer, $250; Kathy Nishikawa, $100; Deb Corrao, $50; and Samuel Brandt, $10.

Steven Engerer wrote, “ In memory of Joanna Bitter as she will be greatly missed but never forgotten! We were glad we got to know her; briefly but with a long lasting memory. Bill, our hearts are with you and your families!” - Steven and John (Toyota)

Kathy Nishikawa wrote, “This is dedicated to Joanna Bitter. May she rest in peace.”

Sheila Barnes donated $50 in memory of F. Allen Barnes, adding to her original donation of $1000, which she made in December of 2001, the year the Roadracing World Action Fund was formed. She wrote, “Fifteen years ago this month [July] my husband died in a motorcycle accident. He was a great fan of motorcycle road racing and it seemed very appropriate [at the time] to donate to the Acton Fund in his memory. I have never regretted that decision as I have continued to follow racing and see just how critical your work has been. Every July I look for a charitable organization to make a small donation to in an area that he would have been interested in. I realized how much time had passed since my original donation to you and that another one, albeit quite a bit smaller, was long overdue. Thanks for all you do to promote racing and the safety of the riders.”

Donations in memory of the late racer Dane Westby were made by MotoAmerica team owners George Latus, $500 and Michelle Lindsay on behalf of TOBC Racing, $650.

Donations were made in memory of racer Peter Lenz included one from Meika Caughey, $10, who wrote, “ I dedicate this donation to all my friends racing out there, especially the ones keeping Peter in their thoughts while doing so.” Also donating in memory of Peter Lenz were Fernando Seguro, $100; James Henkels, $45; Dave Molloy, $40; David L. Cruz, $28; and Frank Berns, $25.

The Midwest Safety Crew made its first contribution to the Roadracing World Action in 2007 in memory of Bill Ritger, a long-time ASRA/CCS race controller who in the early 1990s helped found the cornerworker/safety group, based at Black Hawk Farms. The Midwest Safety Crew has disbanded, donating its remaining funds, $10,062.53, to the Roadracing World Action Fund, also in Bill Ritger’s memory. With this donation, the grand total donated by the Midwest Safety Crew is $12,184.32.

Sponsored Deployments

Roadracing World Action Fund soft barriers were able to be deployed at numerous events across the U.S. thanks to donations from tracks and racing organizations that rallied to pay the costs of transportation and deployment, with donations exceeding the costs by at least $2,500 per event. Road races at VIR, NJMP, Road America, Road Atlanta, Barber Motorsports Park and COTA, as well as a dirt track event at Mid-Ohio and the public-road event on Pikes Peak, raised $126,306, more than covering the costs, with the remainder ready for future soft barrier purchases.

Contributor comments and dedications are included below with their listing. Total overall contribution appears in parentheses.

2015 Road Racing Fund Donations

KRAVE $62,350 Sponsored Deployments

VIRginia Int’l Raceway $20,000 Sponsored Deployment

Midwest Safety Crew/BHF $10,062.53 ($12,184.32) In Memory of Bill Ritger Broken Wing Benefit $7001 ($27,419)

2015 Midwest Track Day Chili Cookoff $5,323

Pirelli World Superbike Fundraiser Laguna Seca Ticket Package $4,280

P.R.E. Annual VIR Fundraiser $4,000 ($36,122)

Backcountry/ $3,176 ($10,037.11)

Chris Ulrich Two-Up Superbike Riders/ Fundraiser $3,145 ($53,405)

Michael Arenella/Chevron Matching Funds $2,000 ($8,658)

Christopher Daugherty $900 ($2,177)

TOBC Racing/ Michelle Lindsay $650 In Memory of Dane Westby

George Latus $500 In Memory of Dane Westby

Zachary Smith/Microsoft Matching Gift $500 ($2,500)

Anonymous/Mohnton PA $500 ($1,000)

Joe & Andrea Marietta $407 ($3,256) In Memory of Jeremy Gordon

Craig Beardsley $400 ($2,410) Members $541 ($2,977)

Gustavo Aramayo $520

Keith & Patti Souter $400 ($2,600)

Kyle Hollingsworth $375

Gordon Pull/Team Grom/M1GP 24-Hour Endurance Charity Race $370

Jeffrey Souder $300/ Midwest Track Day Chili Cookoff

Steven Engerer $250 In Memory of Joanna Bitter

Robert Berbeco $200/ Midwest Track Day ($250)

Teespring LLC $158.42

Jonathan Oakden-Graus $100

Steve Terbrueggen $100 ($300)

Mark Okamura $100

Scott Tackett $100

Kathy Nishikawa $100 In Memory of Joanna Bitter

Michael Kelly $100 ($250)

Andy Findling $100

Fernando Seguro $100 In Memory of Peter Lenz

Jorge Covarrubias $75 ($125)

Sol Performance Riders of the MRA $60

Thomas Kaley, Jr. $50 ($100) “Donation thanks to WERA classifieds.”

United Way $34.14

Don Harbidge $50 ($130)

Sheila Barnes $50 ($1,050) In Memory of F. Allen Barnes

Gill Barnett $50 ($100)

Deb Corrao $50 In Memory of Joanna Bitter

Dustin Ducote $50 “Keep up the good work, JU.”

Robert Vester $50 ($150) In Honor of James Nicholas

Brandon & Heather O’Neill $50 ($150)

James Henkels $45 In Memory of Peter Lenz

Dave Molloy $40 In Memory of Peter Lenz

Butch & Susan Bobenmoyer $30 ($100)

Aaron Mosbery $30

David L Cruz $28 ($46) In Memory of Peter Lenz

Frank Berns $25 ($45) In Memory of Peter Lenz

Rich Quinlan $25

Henry DeLuca $20 ($125) “Paying a bet I had with IOM TT”

Meika Caughey $10 In Memory of Peter Lenz

Samuel Brandt $10 For Joanna 88

United Way Bartholomew County $4 Anonymous

2015 Dirt Track Fund Donations

AMA Racing $13,291 Sponsored Deployments

Tammy Stratman Brown Charities Foundation $1,000 ($7,000)

Ramspur Winery LLC $442.02 ($1,677.02)

David Evans $100 ($125)

Donna & Jennifer Faber-Lascoskie $100 ”In honor of our dear friends, Chris & Pam Carr”

Ann & Gerry Carr $100 ($300)

Ed Valiket $50

Accounting Details From 2001 to November 28, 2015

Road Racing Expenditure Details

Purchases of soft barriers: $1,124,130.39

Shipping/Customs: $62,784.

Bank Fees: $4,488.00
Transportation & Installation: $198,646.25

Soft Barrier Parts, Repairs & Signage $12,501.72

Accounting/Business Fees: $4,768.00

Misc. Supplies/Services $906.15

Office Services: $4,987.00

Total Spent: $1,413,211.51

Total Donations Collected: $1,468,481.78

Cash on hand: $55,270.27

Dirt Track Expenditure Details

Purchases of soft barriers: $123,789.35

Shipping/Customs: $2,717.72

Transportation & Installation: $2,174.77

Total Spent: $128,681.84

Total Donations Collected: $124,172.99

Cash on hand: ($4,508.85)

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