As you may know, I'm a huge NASCAR fan! I have been lucky enough in my radio career to get to chat with NASCAR drivers every so often, and nobody is more fascinating to chat with than the legendary Kyle Petty. Kyle truly knows every aspect of NASCAR better than anyone else, as he's been around the sport his entire life. His grandfather Lee Petty was a pioneer. His father Richard Petty is a legend. Kyle made over 800 starts in NASCAR and has eight wins under his belt. Kyle knows the highest of highs that the sport of NASCAR can bring.
Kyle also knows the lowest of lows. In 1975, Kyle's uncle Randy (his mom Lynda's brother), who was a member of Richard Petty's pit crew, was killed in a pit road incident at Talladega. And in May of 2000, Kyle's 20-year-old son Adam was tragically killed in a practice crash at New Hampshire.
If it's happened in NASCAR, Kyle has seen, lived it, and probably has a thought-provoking opinion on it. I love hearing Kyle's take on everything NASCAR-related because he's been there, done that, and truly knows the sport better than anyone. So I was excited to both find out that Kyle took time during the pandemic to write a book on NASCAR, and I was equally excited to get to chat with him about it.
The book is called Swerve Or Die: Life At My Speed in the First Family of NASCAR Racing, and already has some strong praise! Check out some of these quotes:
- "After all the things Kyle's done, I knew there had to be a book in there somewhere. Well, here it is. And I'll tell you what: Kyle doesn't believe in keeping secrets. Even I learned some things in here. And yeah, his mom deserves all the credit for how he turned out." --Richard Petty
- "He's lived through the worst possible scenario that could happen to anyone. Imagine going back to Loudon after that! You could throw haymakers at Kyle. He just rolls with it. He's like, 'I'm gonna walk around with a ponytail.I'm gonna sing.I'm gonna say whatever I wanna say on TV.' With that upbeat attitude of his and the way he takes advantage of every opportunity, I do think Kyle has lived the lives of five people combined."--Joey Logano, NASCAR Champion
- "It's always darkest in the shadow of greatness. Each generation has had to prove itself along the way, and believe me it doesn't get easier. Kyle's story is a uniquely American one about a uniquely America sport. I highly recommend it."-- Jay Leno
- "Kyle isn't just a racecar driver. He has a powerful voice, a bottomless heart and a real gift for bringing people together. What he's achieved with Victory Junction and the Kyle Petty Charity Ride. It's just incredible. His life story is packed with lessons for all of us."--Herschel Walker
- "As a competitor, broadcaster, family member and dear friend, Kyle has lived through every era of our sport, impacting the lives of so many along the way. With a heartfelt gift for storytelling, his love for NASCAR and passion for the people in it make his first-hand account of motorsports history a must-read for racing fans everywhere."--Lesa Kennedy, executive vice chair of NASCAR
Check out my chat with Kyle above, and read Swerve Or Die Sooner than later!