At Round 3 of the 2023 V8 SuperUtes Series – the OTR SuperSprint, The Bend, SA (18 to 20 August) – Jimmy Vernon ‘The Phantom’ will be racing for kids with cancer, with the photo of 3-year-old Port Noarlunga cancer-warrior Jonas, diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, on his helmet.
Three year old Jonas was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in February this year. The past seven months have been a rollercoaster for young Jonas, his parents – Steven and Jessica, and his 4-year-old brother Noah. But with the V8 SuperUtes Series coming to Adelaide this weekend (18 – 20 August), the family is excited to have been invited as special guests to The Bend Motorsports Park.
Racing car driver Jimmy Vernon, aka ‘The Phantom’, will be racing for Kids with Cancer Foundation at the OTR SuperSprint – Adelaide’s race weekend as part of the V8 SuperUtes Series. As part of this, he will race with the photo of 3-year-old Port Noarlunga cancer-warrior Jonas on his helmet.
Jonas and his family will be heading to The Bend for the race weekend as Jimmy Vernon’s special guests, going behind the scenes to meet Jimmy and his team, tour the Pit, sit in Jimmy’s race car ‘The Purple Rocket’, and enjoy a weekend of fast cars and fun.
As an Ambassador for Kids with Cancer Foundation, Jimmy has committed his 2023 V8 SuperUtes Series season to raising awareness of the near 800 children diagnosed with cancer each year, and to help raise funds to support the important programs Kids with Cancer Foundation provides.
Jonas was referred to the Women’s and Children’s Hospital (Adelaide) - Michael Rice Centre for a bone marrow biopsy on 7 February 2023, after several presentations to Noarlunga Hospital and Flinders Medical Centre with reoccurring fevers, pain and general illness. Investigations revealed B Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. In that moment, Jonas and his family’s life changed instantly. They began a whirlwind journey of intense treatments and many inpatient hospital stays, with the challenges of juggling an older sibling and a sick child. Kids with Cancer Foundation has been involved in funding the Women’s & Children’s Hospital Adelaide for 20 years, as well as directly assisting families of kids with cancer in Adelaide through providing Care Packs, financial support and fun respite days – as Jonas and his family are looking forward to experiencing at the upcoming SuperUtes.
Last year, Jimmy Vernon was crowned Winner of the 2022 Australian Production Car Championship, A1 class – again racing for kids with cancer. This year, Jimmy Vernon is competing in the V8 SuperUtes Series looking to make even more noise for this great cause that he deeply believes in.
Jimmy said: “Racing for kids with cancer, to help shine a spotlight on the near 800 children diagnosed with cancer each year, is an absolute honour. As a dad to a toddler myself I couldn’t imagine going through such a difficult journey. I love meeting these brave, young warriors, giving them and their families a special day out, and seeing the smiles on their faces when they sit in my race car.”
Jimmy has pledged 20% of his corporate sponsorship funding to Kids with Cancer Foundation, which is committed to making today easier for kids with cancer and their families through providing direct financial support to families, Care Packs, Wigs4Kids, plus funding critical hospital salaries and infrastructure, cancer research and more. This year, Kids with Cancer Foundation marks 25-years of supporting kids with cancer and their families and celebrated providing over $30 million in funding nationwide through its programs.
For more information on Kids with Cancer Foundation, visit: www.kidswithcancer.org.au
For more information about Jimmy Vernon, visit: www.jimmyvernon.com