Big Boost for Hailie Deegan, Natalie Decker Among Other Female NASCAR Hopefuls as $10 Million Pledge Is Issued by Busch Beer

Published 02/14/2022, 11:09 AM EST
DAYTONA, FL – FEBRUARY 08: Natalie Decker, driver of the #52 N29 Technologies, LLC Ford, during qualifying for the Lucas Oil 200 Driven By General Tire on February 8, 2020 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fl. (Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

As per the latest news, Anheuser Busch has come out with a new scheme. The company’s Busch Light brand is pushing to create more gender equality on the NASCAR racetrack. As per the scheme, they will spend $10 million in a three-year span to try and elevate women in the sport. To do this, the company has kickstarted the Busch Light Accelerate Her program. This spells great news for the likes of Natalie Decker, Toni Breidinger, and Hailie Deegan, among others.

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What this program is expected to do is provide funds, track time, media exposure, and training to potential female NASCAR racers. The list includes ARCA drivers Amber Baclaen, Toni Breidinger, Stephanie Moyer, and Brittney Zamora. Even the likes of Jennifer Jo Cobb, Melissa Fifield, and Natalie Decker qualify for this. However, there is a caveat; the racer needs to be at least 21 years old or older. This likely explains why Hailie Deegan is not included, considering she is just 20 years old.

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How will this NASCAR program help the likes of Hailie Deegan and her fellow female racers?

Anheuser Busch senior brand director Krystyn Stowe said, “Busch Light has been an iconic sponsor in NASCAR for decades and we’ve been lucky to witness some of the greatest women drivers in history, but it can’t be argued that the NASCAR Cup Series field is dominated by male drivers. Through our sponsorship rights and our platform, we’re seizing the opportunity to make historic progress toward gender inclusivity. While the immediate program goals may start here. We hope the sentiment will carry far beyond that. Encouraging the broadcast level of inclusivity across all sports.”

MARTINSVILLE, VIRGINIA – OCTOBER 30: Hailie Deegan, driver of the #1 Monster Ford, walks on stage during pre-race ceremonies prior to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series United Rentals 200 at Martinsville Speedway on October 30, 2021 in Martinsville, Virginia. (Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images)

Admittedly, we need a talented female racer to get a chance to challenge the big boys. The last person to do that was Danica Patrick. The 39-year-old raced in the Cup Series full-time from 2013 to ’17. During her career, Patrick made a grand total of 191 career starts, notching up seven Top 10 finishes. At the moment, Deegan and Cobb are the only drivers competing full-time in NASCAR. To be precise, they are both going to compete in the 2022 Truck Series season.

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Dhruv George

13254 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Motorsports author for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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