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“Hendricks Is the Man”: Billionaire Rick Hendrick’s $1.8 Million Revelation in Honor of Tony Stewart, Once Left Eddie Vedder and the NASCAR Community Astonished

Published 12/07/2023, 1:04 AM EST

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Tony Stewart met singer Eddie Vedder at unprecedented times. On a Thursday in May 2016, Stewart was hit with a $35,000 fine from NASCAR for comments belittling the sport. But Smoke wanted to end his day on a high note. Ergo, a Pearl Jam concert to hang out with Crazy Ed in Columbia, South Carolina. But it wasn’t just a gig… the two became good friends. This ultimately cascaded into many pleasant surprises that ultimately led to the veteran Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick‘s whopping $1.8 million donation.

One good thing came out of the friendship. Upon learning that Vedder runs a non-profit called EB Research Partnership to aid in curing a skin disease known as epidermolysis bullosa, Stewart extended his hand in supporting the noble cause by donating thousands of dollars. Seven months after their initial conversation, during the 2016 NASCAR Awards ceremony in Las Vegas, Ed surprised Tony and opened with a joke. “Fine money,” hinting at his run-in with the organization.

Rick Hendrick’s surprise left Tony Stewart and Eddie Vedder speechless

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‘Smoke’ was under the impression that Vedder was on vacation, due to which he didn’t expect his attendance at the NASCAR Awards ceremony. But to his surprise, Eddie marked his presence on Friday night, which made him emotional and brought a smile to the retiring NASCAR driver’s face. While addressing the gathering, Vedder emphasized the first time he met Tony and the impression he left on him. He said, “When I first met Tony, I was humbled to hear him say how much our music meant to him and it got him through some rough, tough, and difficult times. I can relate.”

Eddie then expressed his heartfelt gratitude toward Stewart for his contribution to helping kids having Epidermolysis bullosa, a rare genetic skin disorder, by saying, “Tony heard of our involvement [EB Research Partnership] and the effective ways that we’ve making a difference, and he wrote us a check for thousands of dollars. I am very proud to recognize my friend Tony Stewart.”

However, it was that moment when the Billionaire owner of HMS, Rick Hendrick, approached the podium and disclosed, “On behalf of the motorsports industry, it’s my honor to announce tonight a donation in your name to Eddie Vedder’s EB foundation for $1.8 million,” that came as a shocker for Tony and Eddie alike.

 

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Hendrick’s out-of-the-blue revelation was astonishing, and seeing this not only invoked nostalgia among fans but also led them to express their emotions in the comments.

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Fans get emotional by virtue of Rick Hendrick’s disclosure

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When NASCAR on NBC posted a throwback video of the Awards ceremony on their Instagram account, it took little to no time for the fans to flood the comments section with their thoughts and wishes.

However, one fan made the best use of the opportunity and took a playful jibe at Vedder and wrote, “Eddie owes NASCAR a free concert at Daytona in 2024! I had no idea about Tony and Eddie being friends!!”
One fan praised their efforts and wrote, “God moves people and giving in a very loving and mysterious manner……always. God has a very special place in his heart for Tony and Eddie. “

Another fan expressed his love for Tony and Rick and commented, “I love both Rick Hendrick and Smoke! Both are great people with big hearts!”
One fan was so impressed by Rick’s gesture that he wrote, Mr Hendricks is the man. Owning 4 of the best Chevrolet on the track and doing things like this”

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Both Rick Hendrick and Tony Stewart have shown that despite being rivals on the asphalt, they have an entirely contrary side that aims to nurture and care for those in need.

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Written by:

Aneesh Gupta

192Articles

One take at a time

During my teenage years, the thunderous symphony of Formula 1's V8s and the explosive crack of NASCAR's pistol shot became the soundtrack of my adrenaline-fueled existence. The relentless roars of engines, accompanied by the screeches of tires, ignited a passion within me that couldn't be contained. The screen came alive with a captivating dance of aggression, passion, frustration, and celebration, keeping me on the edge of my seat.
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Edited by:

Ranvijay Singh