Matt Stone Racing teams up with Variety

  • Virgin Australia Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 15/05/2019
  • By

Matt Stone Racing is joining forces with children's charity Variety to give unique experiences to youngsters who are sick, disadvantaged or have special needs.

MSR carried Variety branding on Todd Hazelwood's Commodore in the 2018 Newcastle finale, and made a $5,000 donation to the longstanding charity.

The renewed partnership was announced at Kurrawa Surf Club on the Gold Coast, where Queensland's edition of Variety's famous Bash trek for older cars will finish later this year.

Variety will bring children to Supercars events during the season to experience the action and go behind-the-scenes to meet Hazelwood.

"We are all familiar with the famous Variety Bash ‘drive through the bush’ which takes place each year," team boss Matt Stone said.

"It makes sense that the charity we develop a partnership with also has a relationship with motorcars, albeit usually a bit more quirky than ours."

On Wednesday, Hazelwood met with 15-year-old aspiring driver Liam Hydes.

The Gold Coast youngster was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder aged six, and has severe dyslexia.

A trip to a karting track two years ago sparked his passion for motorsport and thanks to a Variety Heart Scholarship, Hydes has now started racing in Queensland's Hyundai Excel Series.

"Liam knows all of the drivers, he watches hours of racing on TV and was really excited to be given the opportunity to meet Todd," his mother Nicole said.

"Liam suffers many challenges in his everyday life, but when he sat in that kart, it all just clicked.

"At his very first race moving into cars recently in the CAMS X3 Hyundai Excel he qualified 12th out of 30 in the pouring rain both in qualifying and Race 1 in Warwick.

"He actually told me he used the rearview mirror to navigate his way around the track because he couldn’t see in front of him. That’s just how his mind works.

"We are so proud of how Liam takes it all in his stride."

Hydes was joined by students from Broadbeach Kindergarten in meeting Hazelwood and getting an up-close look at the MSR Commodore.

"We believe all kids deserve a fair go, so we’re proud to partner with Matt Stone Racing to raise awareness and funds for kids in need," Steve Wakerley, CEO of Variety – the Children’s Charity of Queensland, said.

"Kids like Liam face different challenges in life, but with the support of generous organisations like Matt Stone Racing, we can give all kids a fair go.

"The kids were all so excited to be meeting a ‘real life race car driver’.

"This is the type of opportunity we are looking forward to creating with MSR."

Hazelwood is 17th in the Supercars standings after 12 races in his second season, aboard a Triple Eight-built Commodore.

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