Aric Almirola on the importance of the Daytona 500 and 'butterflies' in the stomach
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Aric Almirola has big ambitions for the NASCAR Cup Series, but the Daytona 500 seems to be his priority. “First off, Daytona is always exciting for me. It’s my home race track, having grown up just two hours away in Tampa,” said Almirola, as quoted by motorsport.com “I have a lot of childhood memories from going there with my family." There are many fond memories of Daytona.
“To top it off, I’ve won there both in Xfinity and Cup cars. I just have a tremendous amount of fond memories of spectating at Daytona, even all the way back to my beginning days. I would go back and go-kart in Daytona.
It’s always exciting because it brings back all those great memories. Not to mention, it’s the world center of racing. It’s the greatest place on earth to go race at. It’s the biggest race of the year, the one everyone wants to win.
Your name is forever etched in history. There’s just no other race like it”.
Aric Almirola on the importance of Daytona 500
Almirola is aware of the importance of such a race. A large number of viewers and fans expect a lot from you.
Your adrenaline rises like never before, and you are focused as much as possible on what you are doing. “When I strap in for the Daytona 500, it is an exhilarating feeling,” Almirola said. “All of your senses are on high alert.
There are 150,000 people on the property and millions watching at home. It is such an unreal feeling." There is also a small amount of nervousness, but Almirola explains it in a different way. “You’ve got butterflies in your stomach, but not the nervous kind.
It’s more of an antsy, ready-to-go feeling. There’s been all this hype and build-up during preseason and Speedweek, and finally you’re at the moment where you’re going to roll off pit road and go to battle”.