Drivers to use racing season finale to raise funds for California fire victims
Sunnyvale, Calif. (Nov. 27, 2018) — This December 1 and 2, George Kurtz will cap off a dynamic season of sportscar racing with one last endurance event: the NASA USAF 25 Hours of Thunderhill. This will be the seventh consecutive year that Kurtz, the CEO and co-founder of cybersecurity company CrowdStrike, will participate. After taking first place in the ESR class and third overall at last year’s event, Kurtz is aiming for an overall win in a field of nearly 50 cars alongside teammates Gerhard Watzinger, Kenton Koch and Jeff Shafer in the No. 44 Team CrowdStrike/One Motorsports car.
In this 25-hour test of endurance racing just outside of Willows, California, the team’s Suzuki Hayabusa-powered Radical SR3 could complete over 700 laps before Sunday’s checkered flag waves — nearly the equivalent of driving across the United States. For each lap completed, Kurtz has pledged that $2 will be donated to the CrowdStrike Foundation’s fundraiser to help victims of the recent California wildfires. LaSalle Solutions, an IT security solutions and services company, will contribute to the recovery effort by donating additional resources to the fundraiser.
ENDURANCE DRIVER LINEUP
Kurtz, who last month completed another full season of sprint and endurance racing in the Pirelli World Challenge, is a familiar face at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill event. With ESR class wins in 2012 and 2017, he’s set on an overall victory in 2018. His teammate, CrowdStrike Chairman of the Board Gerhard Watzinger, has a wealth of endurance racing experience under his belt. He’s been racing SR8 and SR3 Radicals for several years, was part of last year’s class win at Thunderhill with Kurtz, and performed well at this year’s Michelin Le Mans cup in an LMP3 car.
Also re-joining the lineup for 2018 is the young all-star endurance driver Kenton Koch. The IMSA Prototype Challenge driver’s resume is impressive, with a class win at the 2016 Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona and multiple track records to his name. SCCA prototype champion Jeff Shafer, founder of One Motorsports, rounds out the team entry list. The sportscar veteran has also raced at Thunderhill each year since 2012, tallying multiple class wins with Radical cars and in the ESR class.
FROM BUSINESS SUIT TO DRIVER’S SUIT
As a busy executive in the cybersecurity industry, Kurtz continues to succeed in racing while guiding CrowdStrike, which he co-founded in 2011, along its impressive growth trajectory. Kurtz dedicates time to polishing his racecraft each month, and driving stints over three hours long through day and night is one effective way to continue building his racing skills.
“Endurance racing is the ultimate test in motorsports,” he said, “and competing at the 25 Hours of Thunderhill has become an annual end-of-year tradition to cap off my race season. I really enjoy the competition and the test of mental and physical endurance that it provides.”
The event weekend will also see sponsors LaSalle Solutions, AWS, CeramicPro and CrowdStrike continuing their support of Kurtz’ car this race season, and he is confident their involvement will continue to be fruitful. “I approach everything I do — from business to racing — with the expectation of finishing with success,” Kurtz said. “If we’re able to pull off what we did in 2012 and 2017, that will be three class wins — and hopefully, an overall race win.”
HELPING THOSE IN NEED
Thunderhill Raceway Park is located just an hour from Butte County, whose residents, especially those in the town of Paradise, are still dealing with exceptional damage and destruction from recent wildfires. Many teams and drivers plan to donate funds to help with relief efforts. Kurtz has pledged that $2 per lap completed by the No. 44 Team CrowdStrike/One Motorsports car will go towards wildfire relief efforts through the CrowdStrike Foundation, which is working to raise over $20,000 to help fire victims across California.
LaSalle Solutions, which has sponsored numerous CrowdStrike Racing events across the country, will augment their sponsorship of Kurtz’ race weekend by donating funds towards the CrowdStrike Foundation’s efforts.
“As many of our customers and friends have been affected by these fires, we are happy to contribute to the relief funds,” said Steven Robb, president of the Solutions Group at LaSalle Solutions.
HOW TO WATCH
Qualifying for the 25 Hours of Thunderhill will be on November 30 from 5:15 to 5:45 p.m. Pacific time. The 25-hour race starts at 11 a.m. on December 1.
Event coverage and the broadcast schedule will be available at the NASA 25 Hour Website.
Follow along with George Kurtz and CrowdStrike on social media:
Race videos, photos and news updates can be found at https://crowdstrikeracing.com.
CrowdStrike, a cybersecurity technology company, is the leader in cloud-delivered endpoint protection. Leveraging artificial intelligence (AI), the CrowdStrike Falcon® platform offers instant visibility and protection across the enterprise and prevents attacks on endpoints on or off the network. CrowdStrike Falcon deploys in minutes to deliver actionable intelligence and real-time protection from Day One. It seamlessly unifies next-generation AV with best-in-class endpoint detection and response, backed by 24/7 managed hunting. Its cloud infrastructure and single-agent architecture take away complexity and add scalability, manageability, and speed.
There’s much more to the story of how Falcon has redefined endpoint protection but there’s only one thing to remember about CrowdStrike: We stop breaches.
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ABOUT THE CROWDSTRIKE FOUNDATION:
The CrowdStrike Foundation was incorporated in 2017. The CrowdStrike Foundation, a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit, funds scholarships and research, provides pro bono security software protection, and supports communities across the globe. Major programs of the CrowdStrike Foundation include:
NextGen Scholarship Program for undergraduate and graduate students studying cybersecurity and/or AI Funding research at universities with leading cybersecurity and/or AI programs
Pro bono security software protection for nonprofit/nongovernmental organizations
Support for communities through philanthropy, volunteering, and other activities.
More information on the foundation’s programs can be accessed from the foundation’s web page: https://www.crowdstrike.org/
Photos: Brett Becker
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