Female NASCAR Driver Hailie Deegan Breaks a Unique Record at World Wide Technology Raceway

Published 08/21/2021, 2:20 PM EDT
Feb 12, 2021; Daytona Beach, FL, USA; Camping World Truck Series driver Hailie Deegan (1) is introduced during the NextEra Energy 250 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


To pardon the pun, Hailie Deegan was in seventh heaven at the World Wide Technology Speedway. The California native finished in a career-best seventh place at the speedway. Meanwhile, Sheldon Creed won ahead Matt Crafton and Ben Rhodes. Stewart Friesen and Johnny Sauter completed the Top 5, as Chase Purdy finished ahead of a delighted Deegan.

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In the process, the 20-year-old has become the fourth female driver to snatch a Top 10 Truck Series finish. To make matters even better, she is the first to take a Top 10 Truck finish at a track that is not the Daytona International Speedway. Her predecessors are Jennifer Jo Cobb, Angela Ruch, and Natalie Decker.

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A thrilled Deegan said, “We got to finish off the season strong. We’ve had a rough year. We have had our ups and downs, our good moments and our not-so-good moments. To come out here, get a solid finish and have something to build off of in these next couple of races and this season.

“It is going to be huge for me.”

How did the race pan out for Hailie Deegan?

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Without a doubt, Deegan’s rookie Truck Series season has borne plenty of fruit. In the buildup to the WWT race weekend, the 20-year-old recorded a best finish of 13th at Kansas and Charlotte. It also helped her case that the World Wide Technology Raceway is a familiar track, so she had a slight advantage.

DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 08: Hailie Deegan, driver of the #4 Monster Energy Ford, looks prior to the ARCA Menards Series Lucas Oil 200 Driven by General Tire at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

“I feel like the tracks where we would have the chances of our best finishes will be at Gateway and Phoenix [Raceway], tracks I’ve been to before,” Deegan said. “[Las Vegas Motor Speedway], we will get a good finish out there because we have been there.”

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She enjoyed a great race and scythed her way up the order from 19th on the grid. Admittedly, there was an element of luck that gifted her seventh place, as she spent much of the race in the midfield. On Lap 115, there was a massive wreck up front and she managed to expertly dodge the wrecking cars to run in 10th. In the end, Hailie Deegan took advantage of a couple of wrecking cars to slot into a career-best 7th.

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Dhruv George

12003 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst 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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