Alon Day making an impact in Europe and America for NASCAR
Alon Day is used to being first in a lot of things and it’s no surprise he’s experiencing several ‘firsts’ competing in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series.
Alon Day was the first Israeli driver to join the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, plus the first NWES driver and the first driver from outside North America to be selected for the NASCAR Next program.
The 25-year-old driver came from GT racing in 2015 after a test session in Italy with CAAL Racing in which he broke the track record at the team’s home track of Magione.
His next race in the NWES will be at Brands Hatch where he scored his first podium finish and then went on to win three out of four playoff races in dominant fashion to finish second in points and win the Junior Trophy (Rookie Of The Year).
In 2016 as a member of the NASCAR Next program, he finished third in points in NWES winning three times and bringing home another Junior Trophy.
Day also impressed fans in the United States after running up front for most of his debut iin the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Mid-Ohio, driving an older Dodge Challenger.
He’s back in the NWES going after the championship behind the wheel of his yellow #54 CAAL Racing Chevrolet SS.
His NASCAR success also gave him an extraordinary recognition from the Israeli government with the institution of the motorsport category in the annual Athlete Of The Year awards in 2016.
Outside the car, he’s very active on social networks and has a large fan base in Israel, where NASCAR is growing more popular every day and he works as a driving instructor for his company.
- 2016 Junior "Jerome Sarran" Trophy Winner (First driver to win back-to-back Junior Trophies)
- 2016 Race And Win Pole Award Winner
- 2016 Makes NXS and NCWTS debut impressing on road courses in the wet
- 2016 First NWES driver to be selected for the NASCAR Next Program
- 2015 NASCAR Whelen Euro Series runner-up
- 2015 Junior "Jerome Sarran" Trophy winner - Rookie Of The Year
Hometown: Tel Aviv, Israel
How long have you been racing and what was the first race you competed in and what kind of car did you drive?
I started racing when I was 10 years old in go karts, 15 years ago. But the first time I actually drove a race car was at age 15 when I started racing in Formula Renault and raced in the Asian Championship, which I won in 2009.
How long have you been competing in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series?
This is my 3rd year in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, and also the 3rd year with my Italian team, CAAL Racing Team.
What made you decide to compete in the NWES?
The first time I tested a NASCAR car was back in 2015 when I had sponsors issues in my GT career, but after the 2015 season I realized that the future in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series is brighter than any other category in Europe, and I just got into NASCAR like never before, especially after being chooses as a NASCAR Next driver.
What makes being a part of the NWES special to you?
I think the fact that the NWES car is so simple, strong and fast. It has a big, powerful engine and it is a very simple car and because of that, the racing is so close and good. Every race in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series features many door-to-door battles and exciting racing all over the place.
How have your fans responded to you being a part of NASCAR in Europe?
The fan base that I have is mainly in Israel, and the first time I raced in Valencia in 2015 people didn’t really understand why I choose to drive in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series, but after being successful, having won races, having fought hard for the championship and having had success in my Xfinity Series debut, people started getting more and more interested in NASCAR, so much that now the sports channels in Israel started broadcasting the races.
What or where is your favorite track on the schedule?
I think all the track in the schedule are unique and special, I don’t have a favorite track, I enjoy every track as all of them have something special that makes them so good.
Do you have any hobbies outside of racing?
Video games, I’m definitely the geekiest on the grid and my favorite one is iRacing for sure! Simulators are part of my everyday life since I built a business on them. At Simrace.co.il we train mostly racecar drivers, but also normal people who just want to improve their understanding of a car’s behavior and their everyday driving.
If you weren't a race car driver, what do you think you would do instead of racing for a career?
Probably a fighter pilot, my next passion besides racing since I was a kid were jet planes and air combats. The F15 has always been my dream plane.
Who has been the biggest influence in your life and/or racing career?
I got into racing from video games, I used to drive as a kid in racing on a simulator called “Grand Prix Legend” which was about the Formula 1 of 1967, so the bigger driver who influenced my career was Jim Clark, the Formula 1 world champion.
Tell me something about you that would surprise your fans?
"I brake with my left foot even on normal road cars. I can do both styles, but the left gives me a better feeling and this feels a little strange to everybody. The only time I absolutely had to use the right foot was the day I passed my driving license test. I really didn't want to fail it!"
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