Kyle Petty at Walt Disney World Marathon

I had to go to Epcot today to check out some stuff for LaughingPlace.com, I know it’s rough but someone has to do it. Of course, today was also the day of the Walt Disney World Marathon. The race was winding down at noon when I pulled into the parking lot. But runners were still crossing the finish line to the sounds of cheers from the crowded stands.

As we walked up to the front gate I saw a small handful of runners who had obviously completed their race some time ago but were waiting for rides or whatever. There, sitting by himself, on a rock under a monorail pylon, was someone that looked a lot like Kyle Petty, Nascar driver and son of the King of racing, Richard Petty. I had previously linked to the story that Kyle would be running in the race as a benefit for his charity ‘Victory Junction Gang Camp.’

I approached and asked him if he had a good race, he said yes. I politely asked if I could take a photo of him with my son he very kindly said yes. We did so. We talked a little bit about the ‘Victory Junction Gang Camp’  then he asked where we were from. I told him Portland, and he said that his charity’s fundraising cross country ride left from Portland last year, and I mentioned that I watched the Biffles race at the Portland Speedway when there used to be a Portland Speedway. Then his ride showed up and we walked off. The whole time no one else recognized him but us.

Kyle_pettyJust got home and uploaded the picture. There’s a couple cool things to notice. First, that’s a great medal the marathon participants got this year. Mickey shaped with a running Mickey Mouse on it. Second, his runner number was 4545, his car number is 45. Third, he’s wearing two watches. I don’t know, is that a common practice of marathon runners?

Anyway, thanks Kyle for being so kind to us after you’d just run a marathon. I hope your team has good luck this season and that I see you in the winner’s circle. You’re a winner in my book for the work you do for the kids at your Victory Junction Gang Camp.

ABC and ESPN will broadcast NASCAR races beginning with the 2007 series.

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