Tomorrow’s race in Daytona Beach, Florida will have a 2015 Toyota Camry as its pace car. Driving that car will be adaptive snowboarder, Dancing with the Stars finalist, and Paralympics bronze medalist Amy Purdy behind the wheel. The biggest race of the NASCAR season is on Sunday, February 22 this year, the 2015 Daytona 500 and the popular athlete is set to put her ambassadorship with Toyota on the race track.
“Another exciting moment in my relationship with Toyota,” said Purdy. “As a race fan, I’m thrilled to be invited to be the Honorary Pace Car driver at the biggest race of the NASCAR season – the Daytona 500. This is another opportunity to try something new and be bold in my own life. I can’t wait to visit my fellow Toyota athletes and step into their world by getting behind the wheel of the Camry pace car.”
The Las Vegas native is a three-time World Cup Para-Snowboard winner and founder of the Adaptive Action Sports organization, a non-profit. Purdy lost her legs to meningitis at age 19 and has been running forward ever since. She was featured in the 2015 Super Bowl commercial Toyota ran, which featured Purdy snowboarding and dancing to Muhammad Ali’s How Great I Am speech (see it below).
This year’s Daytona 500 will mark the second time the Toyota Camry has paced ‘The Great American Race’ (2012, 2015). Camry drivers have combined for five wins in Daytona – one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory and four in the NASCAR Xfinity Series – but Toyota is yet to win the Daytona 500.