From rushing for yards on the field to fueling cars at the track, one NASCAR program is hoping to recruit traditional athletes.
Drivers and pit crew members who already display great athleticism are taught the sport of NASCAR.
Phil Horton, director of athletic performance with Rev Racing, says this is part of NASCAR’S Drive for Diversity Program.
The program began in 2004 to attract minority and female athletes to the sport.
Horton helps overlook the program. He trains, recruits and mentors young athletes and teaches them the sport. He says it’s an easy transition if they’re already athletic and competitive.
“This program is needed to diversify the sport. Basically, we have a small fan base of minorities and we want to increase that,” Horton said.
He says there are currently 35 athletes in the program and 17 of them are working in the sprint cup series.
Horton says NASCAR is working to diversify the sport and help minorities develop into pit crew members and drivers.
He believes the reason why athletes stick with the program for the long haul is because of what it provides – an opportunity to learn and grow. And an added outlet to feed their competitive drive.