Daytona Beach, Florida (Jan 3, 2012) Leilani Münter, race car driver and passionate environmentalist, is bearing down on her goal of driving a “The Cove” themed race car at Daytona International Speedway, arguably one of the most famous race car tracks in the world. The ARCA race at Daytona is February 18 and will air live on SPEED television, which is available in 79 million homes. This will be the first ever ocean awareness themed race car to race the high banks of Daytona. Münter is seeking corporate and philanthropic donations for the remaining funds required, which is $30,000. Leilani has already raised $15,000 in donations prior to this story. To make a tax deductible donation, please visit opsociety.org/securedonation.htm and be sure to write “For Daytona” in the notes.
The Academy-Award winning documentary “The Cove” exposes the annual slaughter of thousands of dolphins in a small cove in Taiji, Japan. It also exposed the undeniable connection between dolphin parks and dolphin captivity, and the largest slaughter of dolphins in the world. ”The Cove forever changed me. I know race fans will respond to it, they just need to know about it,” said Münter. “The race falls on my birthday, and my greatest wish is to end the slaughter and the ongoing abuse of these beautiful ocean creatures.”
This campaign in designed to educate and engage 75 million race fans in the United States. Director of “The Cove” Louie Psihoyos has committed to giving away 1000 DVDs of “The Cove” at the race, and in addition, will be in attendance for the race alongside dolphin activist Ric O’Barry autographing DVDs of the film. People donating $50 or more will be entered into a raffle to win two pit passes for the Daytona race and two other lucky fans will win two garage passes each. Münter will be wearing a helmet painted for “The Cove” during the race, which will then be auctioned off with all the proceeds going to Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project to continue the fight on the ground in Taiji. To donate to “The Cove’s” awareness campaign at Daytona,click here and be sure to write “For Daytona” in the notes.
Münter is a biology graduate turned race car driver and environmental activist who adopts an acre of rainforest for every race she runs and promotes only environmentally conscious companies on her race car. Since seeing the film, she has traveled three times to Taiji, Japan to document the slaughter first hand and has organized several screenings of the film. Most recently, she spearheaded a campaign to turn the lights of the Empire State Building red to raise awareness.
At Münter’s last race at Daytona, she was driving the first ever 100% eco sponsored race car, with six environmental companies coming together to get her car on the track. The race was watched by 2.4 million people live on SPEED television and 100,000 people were watching the race trackside. The media exposure she received included the front page of the sports section of the New York Times.
“The Cove” received 47 awards including the Audience Awards at Sundance Film Festival and the Oscar for best documentary film. New York Magazine described it as “Passionate, exciting, and frightening” and Cinematical called it “A stunning, shocking story. The film itself is an act of heroism.” Over 2.3 million people from 151 different countries have signed a petition asking for the slaughter to end. The grassroots movement to spread awareness has spread to social media, with over 500,000 fans of the movie on Facebook.