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Updated Feb 3, 2014 - 9:43 pm

NASCAR champion surprises Valley vets with race tickets

Veterans at the Phoenix VA Health Care System got a surprise visit from 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion Brad Keselowski on Monday.

Keselowski, 29, said he wanted to give back to the military heroes by handing out tickets to the 50th anniversary of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at the Phoenix International Raceway next month.

"Football's over, racing starts, it's kind of a nice little end of the winter transition and we're getting pumped for it, so kind of spreading the word," said Keselowski.

In 2010, Keselowski founded the Checkered Flag Foundation, supporting military personnel, veterans, first responders and their families.

"It's important for NASCAR, it's important for me personally," Keselowski said. "The Checkered Flag Foundation does things for servicemen, servicewomen and being able to give them some tickets to come out is hopefully our way of giving back a little bit," Keselowski said.

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