NASCAR Chicago Street Race

10-year-old go-kart driver dreams of competing in NASCAR Chicago Street Race

Grayson Walcott is a Chicago native whose need for speed started when he was 5 years old

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Beginning Saturday, dozens of drivers will compete to win NASCAR's second Chicago Street Race.

One aspiring driver dreams it'll be him facing off against others while weaving through the streets of downtown.

"I love just fast cars, I love being around them," said 10-year-old Grayson Walcott, a Chicago native who is already a professional go-kart driver. "I just really like going fast, that’s my passion just being in a racecar.”

Walcott's need for speed started when he was just 5 years old. He has raced all over the U.S. and Mexico, and was nominated Rookie of the Year in the 2022 Formula Karts Mexico Series.

"I’ve been moving up lots of classes since I was 5 years old. Every single class is harder, bigger cars, heavier and bigger, older kids around me," he said. "I have to get a little more aggressive on track when I get older. It’s been a very long journey, too. I hope it keeps going until I get really old."

He's keeping his eyes on the road ahead, hoping to be a professional race car driver once he turns 16. Excitement started to build when he heard NASCAR would host a street race in his hometown.

"I’ve been really excited when I heard it the first time," he said. "I was like, I need to see this because it’s going to be very interesting in the streets of Chicago, and I really hope this race is going to keep going for a little while.”

In a few weeks Walcott will head to Italy for a camp in hopes of being recruited to a team. This Friday he will make an appearance at Bubba's Block Party in Douglass Park. On Sunday he will have the opportunity to interview some of the NASCAR drivers himself.

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