Carolina Panthers

Panthers, B.R.A.K.E.S. will team up for defensive driving course

Doug Herbert has turned his own personal tragedy into B.R.A.K.E.S., the nonprofit organization which will combine Tuesday with the Carolina Panthers to hold an advanced defensive driving course geared primarily to the Panthers’ younger players. Herbert,  Panthers coach Ron Rivera and their wives put the event together.
Doug Herbert has turned his own personal tragedy into B.R.A.K.E.S., the nonprofit organization which will combine Tuesday with the Carolina Panthers to hold an advanced defensive driving course geared primarily to the Panthers’ younger players. Herbert, Panthers coach Ron Rivera and their wives put the event together. ogaines@charlotteobserver.com

A number of Carolina Panthers will participate in an advanced defensive driving course Tuesday run by B.R.A.K.E.S., the local nonprofit organization started by former champion drag racer Doug Herbert.

Herbert, Panthers head coach Ron Rivera and their wives got together and agreed that the class -- which includes behind-the-wheel training in panic braking, crash avoidance and skid control -- would benefit NFL players, particularly the younger Panthers.

“We hope to make this an annual event and also to expand it to some other NFL teams,” said Herbert, whose two sons were killed in a Cornelius car accident in 2008 and whose deaths provided the impetus for him to start B.R.A.K.E.S. “It can save lives. Young NFL players have enough money to buy fancy cars. We want to make sure they are responsible and make good decisions when they are driving them.”

Panthers rookie D.J. Moore was pulled over last month for driving 113 mph in a 65-mph work zone on a Charlotte highway. Herbert said he and Rivera had been talking about doing some sort of combined event together before that incident, however.

Moore is expected to participate in Tuesday’s event, along with most of the other Panthers rookies and several high school football players. The event will be held at zMAX Dragway in Concord.

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