Greenwich teens throw caution flag on distracted driving

Endurance race at Grand Prix New York supports Project Yellow Light

Grand Prix New York will host the third annual 90-minute endurance race to benefit Project Yellow Light, an organization that promotes awareness of the dangers of distracted driving, on Friday, April 17, at 7 p.m. at Grand Prix New York, 333 North Bedford Road in Mt. Kisco, N.Y.

Greenwich teens Ben Albano, a first-year student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, along with his brothers Addison, a senior at Brunswick School and Austen, a sophomore at King, are organizing the race and signing up participants from high schools throughout Fairfield and Westchester counties.

Last year’s event raised $1,000 more than the 2013 race, garnering a total of $3,200 for Project Yellow Light.

Ben, the eldest Albano brother, is a race car driver currently running in the Battery Tender Mazda MX-5 Cup series, and has been actively involved with Project Yellow Light since 2012. Ben was Rookie of the Year in the MAZDASPEED Challenge Summer Series, when he met Julie Garner, the founder of Project Yellow Light.

“Mazda Motorsports partnered with Project Yellow Light as we knew we had an amazing group of talented young racers who could help deliver the message that distracted driving is a serious problem,”Dean Case, director of communications for Mazda Motorsports, said. “These racers are opinion leaders for their teenage peers. We are extremely impressed with the efforts of Ben Albano to go above and beyond in support of this program.”

“Partnering with Mazda Motorsports has made a huge impact on Project Yellow Light, and one of the greatest advocates for our cause is Ben Albano who, along with his family, has raised not only awareness for distracted driving but also funding for Project Yellow Light/Hunter Garner Scholarship,” Garner said.

As many as 20 teams of two to five drivers will race to complete the most laps in the allotted time, competing for prizes which include seats in the Skip Barber Teen Safety and Survival School. Entry fees of $100 per team are fully tax deductible, and all proceeds go directly to Project Yellow Light, thanks to the generosity of local corporate sponsors such as Fresh Green Light Driving School, Petro Heating and Air Conditioning, Gerber Group, Skip Barber Racing School, Aux Delices, and Rey Insurance.

To sign up to race or for more information, contact Ben Albano at [email protected], Addison Albano at [email protected] or Austen Albano at [email protected] .

Project Yellow Light is a national scholarship competition designed to bring about change, in partnership with the Ad Council, Mazda, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, National Organizations for Youth Safety and U-Haul. Applicants have a clear mission: encourage peers to develop and embrace safe driving habits. For both the high school and college contests, the first-place winners receive a scholarship in the amount of $5,000, second-place finishers receive $2,000, and third-place finishers receive $1,000. Project Yellow Light was founded in memory of Hunter Garner – a 16-year-old described as having a dry wit, wicked sense of humor, interesting creative mind, who loved music, running, and had lots of friends from all walks of life. Hunter died in a car crash on June 10, 2007 at the age of 16. For more information about Project Yellow Light, visit www.projectyellowlight.com.

Grand Prix New York Racing is the only large indoor racing, social entertainment, and corporate event venue in the New York City-metro area. Centrally located in the village of Mount Kisco, GPNY is a unique 118,000-square-foot facility that offers a quarter-mile-long, state-of-the-art racetrack for all ages; Spins Bowl, a 19-lane bowling center and special events space, the Art Garage, a visual arts studio for children, teens and adults; Fuel restaurant and bar, with award-winning catering; arcade, carnival room, banquet facility, conference rooms, and more. GPNY is actively involved in community outreach and fundraising efforts. Since its inception in 2008, GPNY has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for local charities by hosting high profile fundraising events. For more information about GPNY, visit www.gpny.com.

Grand Prix New York will host the third annual 90-minute endurance race to benefit Project Yellow Light, an organization that promotes awareness of the dangers of distracted driving, on Friday, April 17, at 7 p.m. at Grand Prix New York, 333 North Bedford Road in Mt. Kisco, N.Y.

Ben Albano of Greenwich, who with his siblings organized the April 17 race to benefit Project Yellow Light, gives advice to a fellow driver.

Addison Albano, Kelly Albano, Ben Albano, Peter Albano, Austen Albano

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