SONOMA, Calif. (Aug. 28, 2018) - Verizon IndyCar Series driver Charlie Kimball shared a meal and tales from the front lines with North Bay first responders at a special luncheon at Bistro Boudin at Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco today.

Kimball, who will compete at Sonoma Raceway in the series season finale in September, joined Sonoma Raceway President & General Manager Steve Page and representatives from the Santa Rosa Fire Department, Marin County Fire Department, United Way of the Wine Country, California Highway Patrol and Sonoma County Regional Parks for the event.

A native of Camarillo in Southern California, Kimball and his family fought the Thomas Fire as it raced toward their avocado farm last December. The fire ultimately damaged about three-quarters of the family's property, including several structures and the home of Kimball's parents. His family continues to work on rebuilding efforts at the ranch.

"Throughout the Thomas Fire, I saw firsthand that during the worst of times for our communities, first responders are at their best, and I'm so thankful for the work that our first responders and support agencies do to not only keep us safe, but to play such a crucial role in the long road of rebuilding," said Kimball, who spent six weeks in Southern California during the fires and even battled the fire alongside first responders. "To come full circle today and be able to thank some of the people who kept the raceway and its surrounding areas safe during the North Bay fires is really special."

The representatives from North Bay agencies played key roles in protecting Sonoma County residents and properties during the destructive fires last October, as well as the more recent Northern California fires.

"The raceway has always been such an incredible supporter in the community, and it was a very unique situation to come to their aid when the fires hit the raceway last October," said Jason Weber, Fire Chief of Marin County Fire Department. "The support they have provided to the community since the fires has been amazing, and to be here today to meet Charlie was really special."

Kimball, driver of the No. 23 Tresiba Chevrolet, returns to the Bay Area to compete in the Grand Prix of Sonoma season finale at Sonoma Raceway, Sept. 14-16. The event will mark the 14th consecutive Verizon IndyCar Series event in Sonoma, and the fourth time the event will crown the series' champion. It will also mark the last INDYCAR event in Sonoma for the foreseeable future, as the series shifts its schedule for the 2019 season.

For more information about the Grand Prix of Sonoma, including great ticket options, visit or call 800-870-7223.