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  • Fifth-Grader America Perez Receives Lionel Racing-Produced Die-Cast Featuring Her Design From Chase Elliott During School Assembly

FORT WORTH, Texas (April 9, 2015) – The rising star of NASCAR got the opportunity Thursday to meet some rising stars of Fort Worth.

>Defending XFINITY Series champion Chase Elliott made a surprise visit to Fort Worth ISD’s Carroll Peak Elementary School to present fifth-grader America Perez with her bounty of prizes for winning the Lionel Racing “Design A Die-Cast” competition.

The competition by the official die-cast of NASCAR was held in partnership with Texas Motor Speedway’s Speeding To Read program and Perez produced the best NASCAR car paint scheme among the seven schools and more than 3,500 students participating in the reading program this year. Northwest ISD’s Nance Elementary School first-grader Tristan Beal won top honors for the Kindergarten-2nd Grade Division of the competition.

Perez’s design featured a black car with flames on a yellow hood, side and back of the car; “Dragon Reader” on the roof in acknowledgement of the school mascot; and Speeding To Read on the side and rear of the Chevrolet SS design template provided to each student.

Before an indoor assembly of kindergarten through fifth-grade students at the urban Fort Worth school, Elliott presented Perez with a 1:24-scale die-cast produced by Lionel Racing that replicated her winning design. Perez, as well as Beal in a separate assembly at Nance, also received a die-cast of Elliott’s No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet and four tickets to Saturday night’s Duck Commander 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway. The classmates of Perez and Beal also received 1:64-scale Lionel Racing-branded die-casts.

Then Elliott did what he does best – race. He and Perez had a best-of-three racing 1:64-scale die-casts – Elliott using his familiar No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet and Perez the No. 15 Lionel Racing Chevrolet – with Elliott nipping her in the finale to win the title of “Mighty Dragon” of Carroll Peak.

“This is a great event,” said Elliott, who will be competing in Friday night’s XFINITY Series O’Reilly Auto Parts 300 at Texas Motor Speedway. “I was happy to be a part of it and happy they asked me. The design of car looked great. It’s always good to see these kids compete and express themselves through competition and a design contest like this.”

The seven schools competing in the fourth year of the Speeding To Read program designed by Texas Motor Speedway encompass four school districts (Denton, Eagle Mountain-Saginaw, Fort Worth and Northwest) in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. The schools consist of reigning champion Roanoke, Argyle’s E.P. Rayzor, Haslet’s J.C. Thompson and Fort Worth’s Carroll Peak, Eagle Mountain, Nance and Riverside Applied Learning Center.

About Lionel Racing: A division of the iconic Lionel Trains company, Lionel Racing is The Official Die-Cast of NASCAR and the market leader in the design, promotion and distribution of licensed die-cast race cars. Based in Concord, NC, Lionel Racing has the pulse of the motorsports community and is committed to giving fans the very best in die-cast collectibles. For more information, visit www.lionelracing.com.

About Speeding To Read: The mission of Texas Motor Speedway's Speeding To Read program is to utilize motorsports, its drivers and our races to incentivize elementary school children to read more frequently and enrich their educational experience and future. Speeding To Read is an incentive-based, motorsports-themed reading program created by Texas Motor Speedway to encourage elementary school students to read more frequently during the school year. The student bodies are split into two divisions - kindergarten through second grade and third through fifth grade - with individuals, classrooms and schools competing against each other to read the most books and earn the title of Speeding To Read champion. Since Speeding To Read began with a one-school pilot program in 2011-12, the program has reached more than 12,000 students that have combined to read 2,031,281 million books. 

About the author

The Texas Motor Speedway Media Relations Department is located on the 6th floor of The Speedway Club outside of Turn 1 of the speedway. 

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