What it’s like to race in the Daytona 500


A sold-out grandstand packed with more than 100,000 people erupts in a loud roar, drowning out the National Anthem. This is meant to be The Great American Race, bigger, brighter, louder than anything else. An incoming rumble and the ground shakes as six fighter jets streak into view. The cheers are drowned out by the jets, flying so low you swear they could hit the tops of people’s heads.

But I can’t get caught up in any patriotism, standing next to my red, white and blue Toyota Camry race car. Too many nerves are pulsating through my body, because I’m about to compete in the 2019 Daytona 500.

I love most forms of car and motorcycle racing and NASCAR’s Daytona 500 is a race like no other. A bucket list item for me is to be in a race car for high-speed laps of that speedway.