Fall 2021 SS Magazine

Reigning NASCAR Rookie of the Year William Byron on the pole for Daytona 500

Winning the pole at the Daytona 500 is a highlight for almost every NASCAR driver. Last weekend, William Byron did so at just 21 years old.

Byron, about to start his second full season in the NASCAR Cup Series, and teammate Alex Bowman (age 25) make up the youngest front row in the race’s history, which continues Sunday.

In 2018, Byron took home Rookie of the Year honors after recording four top-10 finishes and ending the season 23rd in the series standings. And he is one of only two drivers to win Rookie of the Year in the Truck, Xfinity and Cup series in consecutive years.

Bryon is also unashamed about his faith, featuring a plate with Ephesians 3:20 on it in his No. 24 Chevrolet. The plate says, “God’s plan is exceedingly abundantly above anything we could imagine for ourselves.”

“I keep that somewhere where I can see it,” Byron told BillyGraham.org about the plaque. “It keeps me focused on the big picture, not getting caught up in little moments and things here and there.”

He sees racing as a way to share his faith and tell others about Christ.

“I feel like getting into racing was God’s plan for me, so I can spread my faith through the racing garage and with race fans — that’s why it’s been so special,” Byron said in a 2018 CNS News story.

On Sunday, Byron has a chance to become the first pole-sitter to win the Daytona 500 since 2000. The race is scheduled to begin at 2:30 p.m. ET on FOX.

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