DAYTONA, FL (WMBF) - Last year, Grand Strand racing fans we were able to witness a local up-and-coming driver burst onto the Camping World Truck Series scene, as Coastal Carolina student Brandon Brown ran in several events. He was sponsored by the university, and made progress throughout 2016.
He's now back for more at Daytona, and will be in the truck race on Friday night. Brown is coming through the ranks without any big-name race backing, and doesn't have a famous family history of racing. He's doing it with the sponsors and teams that have taken him on in these early years of his career. Though, he has been around unexpected success stories for a little while.
As he was racing this summer, he paid attention to the Chanticleer baseball team's title run to a College World Series championship. It's something that has stuck with him for months since it happened in June.
"That was awesome – it was almost inspiring for (my team) too," Brown said. "They were looked at as an underdog, kind of like how we are, and they came through and they pulled through a championship, so to see them do that was amazing, and maybe it's my turn to pull the underdog Coastal championship this time."
As for the Friday race, Brown gets moving in the Camping World Truck Series this season. In last year's truck race, there was a red flag and 27-minute delay - it led to Brown finishing fourth in his first ever running at Daytona. Now that the new season is here, he still doesn't expect to get into a comfort zone until he's in the car.
"You can keep telling yourself that 'I'm prepared, I'm ready to go', you know I've spent all offseason getting ready for this, and then we get here (to Daytona) and I'm, still really nervous about just qualifying for the race," Brown said. "But we're looking forward to a lot for this race season."
Coastal Carolina is on board with Brown once again for this season, and he plans to run in four truck races and ten Xfinity Series races. Most of those races are not yet decided, but Brown has already said he's planning to run in the Xfinity Series race at Darlington Raceway, the VFW/SportClips Help a Hero 200. That race will be on Saturday, September 2nd.