Frankie Muniz, who is largely recognized for his role as Malcom on the TV show Malcom in the Middle, made his first professional driving debut in the ARCA Menards Series Saturday at the Daytona International Speedway down in Florida.
“Holy moly!!! That was the most insane thing I’ve ever done. Got up into the top 3 before getting turned and causing damage,” the actor-turned-driver wrote on Twitter after the race. “Went to the back and went from 24th to 11th in the final 2 laps. I’m so grateful to my team and @hairclub and sponsors for making my dream a reality!”
Of the 40 drivers participating in the 80-lap race, Muniz proudly ended up in 11th place. Considering this was his first time racing against other professional drivers, placing 11th is a victory in and of itself. Although it signals the end of his acting career, Muniz is looking forward to dedicating his entire life to this new profession.
“I thought about this moment, like how I would feel, a lot. The fact that I’m actually here — I’m in Daytona — I don’t know. It’s almost hard to believe still,” Muniz told Fox News Digital in a recent interview, discussing his newfound passion for racing. “Until I’m at the racetrack and climbing into the car, I feel like it’s still like a dream of mine. And then it obviously becomes reality when I get to do it.”
Despite the fact that he believes this path is the right path for him, every profession comes with struggles. When talking to Fox News reporters, the former actor opened up about the challenges he faces on the race track.
What is Frankie Muniz’s secret to professional race car driving?
“I am very confident, and I hope to surprise people, but I also need to prove it to myself because even in the prep and testing, whatever you’re doing to prepare, nothing matters until (practice), qualifying, or the race,” Muniz explained on Saturday. “It’s a long season, and I try to remind myself (of) that.”
He also admitted that his iconic character likely wouldn’t have the courage to begin a professional racing career. “I don’t think Malcom would have the guts to be doing what I’m doing,” Muniz said to reporters, per Barstool Sports.
“If Daytona doesn’t go like I hope it goes … because a lot of people get knocked out of the race, it’s completely out of their control,” the 37-year-old driver added. “You get caught up in a wreck, you’re watching. It sucks. And now, I’m hoping that’s not the case, but it might be. But it’s a long season, and we got to stick with our program.”
Muniz will continue driving and will begin a full-time ARCA Menards Series schedule in January.
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