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Friday, March 26, 2010

Yonke Motorsports Pints for Prostates Pro Stock Takes on zMax Dragway in NHRA Four-Wide Nationals

Race fans are getting a dramatic reminder at more than 200 miles per hour of the importance of regular prostate health screenings and PSA testing during the inaugural NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway from March 25-28.

Yonke Motorsports is partnering with the Pints for Prostates campaign to promote men’s health. The Pro Stock entry driven by Bob Yonke will carry the Pints for Prostates logo throughout the weekend. Yonke is currently ninth in the NHRA Pro Stock standings after three races. After two qualifying runs on Friday, Yonke is in fourth and will make two more runs on Saturday. The eliminations will be held Sunday. You can check out the action on ESPN2 on Saturday from 7-9 p.m. (ET) and Sunday from 5-7:30 p.m.

“Pints for Prostates is thrilled to be partnering with Yonke Motorsports for the NHRA Four-Wide Nationals,” said Rick Lyke, founder of Pints for Prostates. “Our mission is to raise awareness among men about the need to take charge of their health. The NHRA reaches the exact demographic that must hear this message and Pints for Prostates is fortunate that Yonke Motorsports is giving us this opportunity to reach men at the dragway and watching the action on ESPN2.”

“Prostate disease is a very serious issue for all men, as one out of every six men during their lifetime will be diagnosed with some form of prostate cancer,” said Bob Yonke, team owner and driver. “Early detection is as simple as a blood test during a routine check up with your primary care physician or urologist, you just need to ask them to check your PSA.”

“I started having my prostate checked annually at the age of 45, as my father was diagnosed and successfully treated for prostate cancer at the age of 50,” Yonke said. “It is with great pride and enthusiasm that we have the opportunity to partner with Rick and Pints for Prostates to reach out to the NHRA drag racing community during the inaugural 4-Wide Nationals at ZMax dragway in Charlotte”.

Yonke is issuing a challenge to all drivers and teams to participate in raising awareness about prostate cancer throughout the NHRA community, He encourages all Four-Wide Nationals sportsman participants to donate $20 to Pints for Prostates, while he has personally committed to donate $100. He also challenges all professional teams to match his further commitment of $500 for a qualifying effort, and in making an additional $500 donation for every round win. “I can assure you that this is a very worthwhile cause and that each and every driver in our series will experience personally, with a family member, or with a friend, some form of prostate disease,” adds Yonke.

After qualifying sixth in Phoenix, Yonke achieved the rare feat of reaching the finals in the very first Pro Stock race for which he qualified. In 2002, Yonke and partner, Chris Ringel, started Advanced Medical Partners Inc., a mobile medical business based in Arlington, Texas, that treated approximately 6,000 prostate cancer patients annually with Cryotherapy. The sale of that business in 2008 helped launch Yonke’s full time entry into NHRA Pro Stock as a 49-year-old rookie campaigner.

Fans got the chance to see the Yonke Motorsports Pints for Prostates Pontiac GXP entry and meet Yonke on Wednesday at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery in Charlotte as part of Charlotte Craft Beer Week.

“Every week nearly 4,000 men in the U.S. hear the words ‘you have prostate cancer.’ The key for these guys is detecting the disease in its early stages when treatment is nearly 100 percent successful. This is a great opportunity to reach followers of the NHRA,” said Lyke, a 49-year-old Charlotte, N.C., marketing executive and drinks journalist who had successful prostate cancer surgery in April 2008.

Since being launched in late 2008, Pints for Prostates has reached approximately 80 million people through a combination of donated advertising, news articles, appearances at beer festivals, and coverage on websites and blogs. In 2009, the program was featured at the Livestrong Global Cancer Summit in Dublin, Ireland, and profiled on CNN’s Vital Signs program hosted by Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

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