DILLON, S.C. (WMBF) - The inaugural Necktie Invitational was run at Dillon Motor Speedway on Saturday night. It pitted well-known Pee Dee community leaders like Hartsville Mayor Mel Pennington and Darlington Raceway President Chip Wile. It featured two cars each on the track competing in multiple elimination rounds. the final two drivers race head-to-head for a $3,000 prize donated to Darlington Shares, an organization established earlier this year to raise monies for various Darlington County community initiatives.
"I do a Monday night show with Dan E. Lockemy 'That's racing' and we just started jarring back and forth one day about who could be who on the race track and this has all morphed from that," Wile said. "It's been really cool because we've gotten a lot of the community members involved. Mel Pennington, the coroner Todd Hardee and a bunch of people from Dillon county as well. It's been really great for us because we've all gotten to get together and there's been this sense of camaraderie out of this, which I think is a win."
It's like a fraternity," Pennington joked. "A very fat, slow fraternity at that. We're like a bunch of brothers, so we're going to go out and beat each other's brains and then we're going to come home and celebrate and be glad that we did something good for this charity."
Lockemy said the race was named the Necktie Invitational because for the last month, while the guys were preparing for the race, they'd all meet at the track after work - wearing neckties.