DENVER (CBS4) – Hitting the race track in the name of our nation’s heroes was all part of the fifth annual Kart Racing for Heroes. And this year they honored a Denver police officer hurt in the line of duty.

Kart Racing for Heroes brings military serviceman, firefighters and Denver police officers together for the annual race.

“Kart racing for heroes is a good cause, we are happy to be here today to be a part of it,” said Aaron Kafer, a Denver Police detective.

This year’s race is dedicated to Denver police officer John Adsit, who was hit by a car back in December while on duty. The Denver Police Department formed a new team this year in response.

“He’s home now recovering so we are happy about that,” said Kafer.

The man behind Kart Racing for Heroes is Craig Mansfield. About supporting Officer Adsit, he said, “We wanted to honor him, he chose to protect people and got injured.”

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

Mansfield started the race after his son Kristopher, an Iraq War veteran, returned from overseas — only to be killed by a drunk driver.

“He was 23 years old, he was stationed here at Buckley, senior airman,” described Mansfield.

Now he pays tribute to his son and others like him, through one of their favorite activities.

(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

And while their main focus is stopping impaired driving, Mansfield said it’s also paying tribute to the daily work of service members, firefighters, and police, “It’s just us saying thank you for the job they have to do every day.”

The winning team donates money to the charity of their choice.