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NASCAR driver / SCUBA diver Brendan Gaughan at the Tennessee Aquarium July 8th

6/26/2014 1:19:41 PM

NASCAR driver Brendan Gaughan is also a certified SCUBA divemaster. He will visit the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga between races on the NASCAR Nationwide Series to dive with sharks. Race fans will be able to meet the scuba diving race car driver during Bristol Motor Speedway Day at the Tennessee Aquarium.

NASCAR driver Brendan Gaughan is also an avid SCUBA diver.

Above: NASCAR driver Brendan Gaughan is a certified SCUBA divemaster. He will be the featured guest diver July 8th in the Tennessee Aquarium's Secret Reef exhibit.



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                                            Contact: Thom Benson 423-785-3007


NASCAR driver / SCUBA diver Brendan Gaughan coming to the Tennessee Aquarium July 8th 
“Relaxing” Shark Dive Planned Between Big Races



Chattanooga, Tenn. (June 30, 2014) –  Brendan Gaughan’s recent thrilling NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) victory in the Gardner Denver 200 road race was listed as one of

NASCAR’s weekend Top 5 highlights the week of June 21st. This was Gaughan’s first NNS victory, an especially challenging checkered flag that was captured in wet conditions.

Brendan Gaughan celebrates his NASCAR Nationwide Series victory with his team.
Above: Brendan Gaughan celebrates his NASCAR Nationwide Series victory with his team.

With 15 races down and 18 tracks ahead of him, including an August 22nd appearance at

 Bristol Motor Speedway, “The Last Great Colosseum,” Gaughan is looking forward to every opportunity to unwind between tracks. 

So what does a NASCAR driver do to relax? As a certified SCUBA divemaster, Gaughan enjoys spending time underwater. So he’s taking Tuesday, July 8th off as a day to relax between races - by diving with the Tennessee Aquarium’s sharks in downtown Chattanooga. Gaughan will be the featured guest diver during the 11 am Secret Reef dive show. “My life is very aggressive and fast paced. One of the great things about SCUBA diving is that it gives me the opportunity to slow down and just live in that moment,” Gaughan said. “It is such a peaceful, safe sport that I enjoy sharing with my family. I can’t wait to share this unique experience at the Tennessee Aquarium with everyone.”

While most people might fear sharks and worry about their “killer attitude,” Gaughan knows the truth about sharks. The Aquarium’s toothy Sand Tiger and Sandbar Sharks might be somewhat friendlier than the other drivers he faces on the Nationwide Series.

“I feel much safer next to a Sand Tiger Shark than I do next to some of my competitors,” Gaughan said. “On the track I have to get to know my competitors to find out who the Great Whites are and who the Nurse Sharks are. When I’m in the ocean I know that most sharks are peaceful creatures. Unfortunately, many television programs haven’t done these animals any favors. They frequently make them out to be ferocious, man-eating animals, but they aren’t.” 

Following his appearance in the Secret Reef, Gaughan will spend some time in the Ocean Journey building signing autographs and greeting his fans. Hopefully many will also become shark fans after meeting the only NASCAR driver / SCUBA diver to plunge into the Tennessee Aquarium’s shark tank. Gaughan would like to see more people who are eager to learn more about these important apex predators. “It’s sad and devastating what humans have done to them,” Gaughan said. “Every year a substantial number of sharks are killed. I’d like to think that when people come to places like the Tennessee Aquarium, to see and appreciate these amazing creatures, they get excited about helping them. Hopefully, increased awareness leads to additional conservation measures to save sharks before it’s too late.”

As part of Bristol Motor Speedway Day, guests will get a special Aquarium admission discount when they mention Bristol at the Ticketing Center. Visitors will also be able to take pictures with a NASCAR Nationwide Series show car and the Bristol Motor Speedway pace car which will be displayed on the Tennessee Aquarium Plaza.

Gaughan and other NASCAR drivers again set their sights toward enduring the high-banks of Bristol on Aug 20, 22-23. IRWIN Tools Night Race tickets start at just $75 and weekend-ticket packages for the World’s Fastest Half-Mile are available for as low as $99 online or by calling 423-BRISTOL.  

Aquarium fans can discover more about sharks during SharkFest on Friday, August 1st.


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About Richard Childress Racing:
Richard Childress Racing (www.rcrracing.com) has earned more than 200 victories and 15 championships, including six in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with the legendary Dale Earnhardt. RCR was the first organization to win championships in the Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. Its 2014 Sprint Cup Series lineup includes two-time NASCAR champion Austin Dillon (No. 3 Dow/Cheerios/American Ethanol/Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet), 2011 Brickyard 400 champion Paul Menard (No. 27 Menards Chevrolet) and 2008 Daytona 500 champion Ryan Newman (No. 31 Caterpillar/Quicken Loans/WIX Filters/Kwikset Chevrolet). Its Nationwide Series program includes Brian Scott (No. 2 Shore Lodge/Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff/Anderson's Pure Maple Syrup Chevrolet), 2012 Camping World Truck Series rookie of the year Ty Dillon (No. 3 Bass Pro Shops/WESCO/Yuengling Light Lager Chevrolet), Brendan Gaughan (No. 62 South Point Hotel & Casino/WIX Filters/ Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff Chevrolet) and a multi-driver lineup with the No. 33 Menards Chevrolet team.


About Speedway Motorsports:
Speedway Motorsports is a leading marketer and promoter of motorsports entertainment in the United States. The Company, through its subsidiaries, owns and operates the following premier facilities: Atlanta Motor Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway, Sonoma, Kentucky Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, New Hampshire Motor Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway. The Company provides souvenir merchandising services through its SMI Properties subsidiaries; manufactures and distributes smaller-scale, modified racing cars and parts through its U.S. Legend Cars International subsidiary; and produces and broadcasts syndicated motorsports programming to radio stations nationwide through its Performance Racing Network subsidiary. The Company also equally-owns Motorsports Authentics, a joint venture formed with International Speedway Corporation to produce, market and sell licensed motorsports merchandise. For more information, visit the Company's website at www.speedwaymotorsports.com.


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