Coastal Carolina sophomore Brandon Brown knows a thing or two about trying to break into the racing world. The full time student is also a driver in NASCAR’s truck series.
“It’s NASCAR, it’s something you grow up watching on tv and all of a sudden your there,” Brown said. He ran his first truck series race last season, and added more this year.
“You definitely get the adrenaline rush. You kind of tunnel vision and forget about everything else that happens, like regular life,” Brown said.
The competition puts him up against some of NASCAR’s best.
“You’re in a pit stall that might be at one end of the track and you Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon are at the other end of the track and its kind of surreal,” Brown explained.
While he runs in the same races, the playing field isn’t exactly level. Brown works with a small family owned company called Brandonbilt Motorsports, and getting the best parts isn’t cheap or easy.
“Being one of the lower budgeted teams that races, we have to pick and chose our times to really put all our efforts into it to really keep everything afloat,” Brown said.
That changed for him one day in March, when Brown decided to throw on one of his favorite hats before a race.
“I was wearing the hat, and a couple people caught pictures of it and it was getting shared around,” Brown said.
Fast-forward two months later, and Brown found himself with his first major sponsor- the school he chose, now picked him.
“Coastal coming on board has just opened up so many doors for us to travel and be competitive and actually get the parts that we need for these trucks,” Brown said.
The No. 86 truck made its debut at Kentucky and the new paint job didn’t go unnoticed.
“Seeing a giant Chauncey on the side of a truck, it’s not exactly normal and I’m pretty sure we’re the only teal truck. So the camera loved it and i loved it. It looked cool, everyone was tweeting about it,” Brown said.
He admitted he’d already explained many times what a Chanticleer was, but Brown said he’d take the questions any day. For him, it’s a simple reminder that he’s chasing his dreams in a truck that shows everyone where he started.