Sonoma Raceway will partner with the NHRA to pay tribute to the legion of first responders, the heroes who are among the first people to arrive and assist at a scene of an emergency, at the Toyota NHRA Sonoma Nationals, July 28-30.
The NHRA Salutes First Responders initiative honors medical professionals, law-enforcement officers, firefighters, members of the armed forces, and a number of other professions charged with the safety and well-being of the public.
As part of the program, Sonoma Raceway has put together a Sunday morning Starting Line Party during pre-race festivities highlighting four drag racers who have also served as first responders in their communities. NHRA champions Jack Beckman, Tony “The Sarge” Schumacher, Jason Line and LE Tonglet will be featured as part of the Starting Line Party
Beckman is a former U.S. Air Force sergeant, who was presented with the U.S. Air Force Wall of Achievers honor at Gunter Annex of Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Ala. in 2013. Line, a three-time and defending Pro Stock Champion, served in the U.S. Air Force from 1987-1991 during the Persian Gulf War. In addition, for the past several years, Line has participated in Summit Racing Equipment’s annual Operation Appreciation overseas tour of U.S. military bases.
Since 2000, Schumacher has served as a civilian ambassador for the U.S. Army and hosts recruits and soldiers at each NHRA event. He also has met with troops at various bases in the country and at war-zone military outposts in the Middle East. He has made several trips to Walter Reed Army Medical Hospital in Washington, D.C. Tonglet, the 2016 Toyota NHRA Sonoma Nationals Pro Stock Motorcycle champion, has served as a firefighter for the past three years.
In addition, Sonoma Raceway will recognize military members during race weekend through the Hometown Heroes contest as part of its Heroes in our Community program.