Hailie Deegan is getting acclimated to drafting at Daytona International Speedway in a hurry, as the 18-year old driver paced opening practice at the 2.5-mile speedway for the ARCA Menards Series.
Deegan’s fastest average lap speed was 183.572 mph, and she narrowly edged out Drew Dollar and Tanner Gray for the top spot in the session. Riley Herbst and Bret Holmes rounded out the top-five fastest in opening practice.
After climbing from the DGR Crosley car, Deegan, who hasn’t ever experienced drafting, felt things were a little wild out there.
“That was crazy,” said Deegan. “I think that, that was the first real drafting practice that I had — with more than five cars — and I needed that. I didn’t get a lot of that in the test.”
“That was crazy.” 🤯
— ARCA Menards Series (@ARCA_Racing) February 7, 2020
Deegan says her No. 4 Monster Energy Drink Ford Fusion is good and it was fun leading the howling pack as it was screaming around the famed speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.
Deegan is of course the daughter of action sports star Brian Deegan. The California native has started becoming a household name in stock car circles, as she scored three wins over the past two seasons in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West.
She has been known as a driver who isn’t afraid to use the bumper, but if her car continues to be this fast, she may never get a chance to use the front bumper on Saturday in the ARCA season-opener.
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is also the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed NASCAR as a fan since 1993.