Tony Pedregon is a 2-time National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) Funny Car Champion from East Los Angeles. Tony started racing professionally in 1996, and instead of buying his way into the industry as some racers tend to do, Tony carved out a different path for himself, and worked his way up from the bottom.
“We didn’t have a lot growing up, but what helped me was my foundation,” he said. “My mother is very spiritual, and she made things that were so simple a part of our daily routine. Saying a prayer every night, every morning, those simple things guided me somehow.”
Being a Latino driver, from Torrance, California, the 47-year-old credits these “simple things” for helping him beat the odds to achieve his goals. “I had Jesus on one side, and my family on another, those are the two things that guided me,” he says. “Don’t underestimate the power of people having a good foundation! We don’t always have to be the biggest and the best, but we can do wonders.”
Tony, his wife Andrea, and their four kids live in Indiana, where he was first introduced to K-LOVE while at a fundraiser at his daughter’s Christian school. “TobyMac’s ‘Lose My Soul’ and MercyMe’s ‘The Hurt and the Healer’ are my favorite songs.” he says. Besides racing, Tony is very passionate about his volunteer work, which includes raising thousands of dollars for numerous non-profit organizations such as Locks of Love and Smile Train, “The volunteer work is the thing that is going to last, not the racing.”
His desire to reach out to people is initially what attracted him to racing with the K-LOVE logo on his car, “I race cars but I’m always thinking about what I can do to help people and connect with people,” he said. “I think people look for the Lord when it’s convenient; my hopes and goals for this partnership with K-LOVE are to put God in front of people every day.”
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I think people look for the Lord when it’s convenient; my hopes and goals for this partnership with K-LOVE are to put God in front of people every day.
The racing platform has also given visibility to our Survive to Five program. This partnership with World Vision strives to sponsor children ages newborn to 5 years, to give them a chance to grow healthy past the age of five. These kids are from countries where mortality rates are high and family & community support are missing in their lives.Learn more on how to sponsor a child