(Sept. 20) Apples have symbolized the teaching profession, New York and a computer company.

But in late August, a racecar driver sported the fruit at the World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series in Skagit, Wash.

Through a partnership with Yakima, Wash.-based Sage Fruit Co., NASCAR Nextel Cup Driver Kasey Kahne’s car and uniform sported apples, said Chuck Sinks, president of sales and marketing for Sage Fruit.

Kahne took fourth place in the main race, Sinks said. Steve Beitler, track owner, handed Kahne a $144,000 check for the Kasey Kahne Foundation. The foundation raises money for chronically ill children and their families, diversity awareness and underprivileged children.

Sage Fruit’s three-year promotional contract with Kasey Kahne Racing began in March, Sinks said.

The promotion includes point-of-purchase materials and packaging that promotes Sage Fruit’s apples, cherries and pears.

Lincolnshire, Ill.-based Vance Publishing Corp. — The Packer’s parent company — also is participating in the partnership. The promotion features a Produce Merchandising logo.