At 4-4 and 95 pounds, Rico Abreu admittedly stands apart from other Camping World Truck Series drivers, but he never has felt unique.
“I’ve always wanted to be treated normal because I’m like everyone else,” Abreu said on a NASCAR on NBC podcast episode released Wednesday. “I wake up every day and don’t even realize I’m different. It doesn’t ever cross my mind. There’s nothing I cannot do.”
The two-time defending winner of the Chili Bowl credits the positive attitude to his upbringing in California’s Napa Valley (his family is in the winemaking business). His parents encouraged him to follow his dreams and built a dirt track in their backyard to help launch his racing career several years ago.
“They never allowed me to be different and never treated me differently,” Abreu said. “That’s definitely (led to) where I’m at today. And how little things don’t bother me.”
Abreu will be back in familiar surroundings Wednesday night at Eldora Speedway for the Aspen Dental Dirt Derby.
“It’s an exciting race,” said Abreu, whose rookie season with ThorSport has exhibited flashes of promise at Texas Motor Speedway and elsewhere. “A dirt track racer (Christopher Bell) won last year. It’s going to be tough. The biggest thing is you have to be there at the end and position yourself for the first few rows of the last restart.”
You can listen to the podcast by clicking below or download and subscribe to it on iTunes by clicking here. The free subscription will provide automatic downloads of new episodes to your smartphone. It also is available on Stitcher by clicking here and also can be found on Google Play, Spotify and a host of other smartphone apps.
Below are time cues to provide easy referencing while listening to the episode: