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ARMO Turns Up the Heat for the SEMA Pinewood Drag Race

Pinewood Races
ARMO has sponsored two derby cars built by the kids of Childhelp, which will be raced at the second annual SEMA Pinewood Drag Race.

SEMA's Automotive Restoration Market Organization (ARMO) has proven its readiness to get involved in a cause that serves kids in need and unites the specialty-equipment industry for an all-around good time by sponsoring two derby cars as part of the second annual SEMA Pinewood Drag Race, sponsored by eBay Motors.

The cars will be raced at the event, which benefits children’s charities Childhelp and Victory Junction Gang Camp. Childhelp is an organization that assists abused and neglected children, and Victory Junction Gang Camp provides life-changing camping experiences to disabled and chronically ill children.

"ARMO is proud to support the efforts of the Pinewood Derby competition," said Laura Bergan, chair-elect of ARMO. "Our Select Committee members have all chipped in together."

Approximately $40,000 was raised last year for the two charities. Stock cars were built by children at their camps and then sponsored by SEMA-member companies through their donations to the charities. Each of the 156 cars built were sponsored.

"We've purchased two cars, and even though we have many talented car builders among our membership, we've opted to let the kids have some fun by building and designing our cars," said Bergan. "After all, that's what this event is about—helping the kids!"

This year, about 250 cars will be built at both the Childhelp and Victory Junction Gang Camp facilities. SEMA-member companies can help build cars at the Childhelp Village in Beaumont, California, on Saturday, May 16, 2009, from 9:00 a.m.–1:30 p.m. Similar to the previous year, a team of SEMA-member volunteers and Pinewood Committee members will lend their expertise to the children. Ryan Friedlinghaus from West Coast Customs along with his staff will also be attending.

To volunteer, contact Mike Spagnola at, or Gregory Parker at 615/746-8765 or at

Members that sponsor a child’s car will be the team owner and will race it under the child’s name. To sponsor a child, visit

The Pinewood Drag Race will be held 10:00 a.m.–6:00 p.m. on August 1, 2009, at the Pasadena Convention Center. It will be followed by the SEMA Installation Banquet & Gala Fundraiser, where the 2009 SEMA Hall of Fame inductees will be announced.

For questions about the Pinewood Drag Race and the SEMA Installation Banquet & Gala Fundraiser, contact Lisa Moreno at 909/396-0289, ext. 105 or