HomeNewsArticle Display

Air Force makes special delivery at Daytona 500

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, made a grand entrance to this year’s Daytona 500 race.

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, made a grand entrance to this year’s Daytona 500 race. Wallace teamed up with the U.S. Air Force Wings of Blue Parachute Team to make a memorable entrance into the legendary infield of the “World Center of Racing.” Wallace entered the raceway from 10,000 feet above, after jumping out of a C-17 Globemaster III. Air Force Recruiting Service is entering its 12th consecutive season partnering with Richard Petty Motorsports. (Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Chance Babin)

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, made a grand entrance to this year’s Daytona 500 race.

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, made a grand entrance to this year’s Daytona 500 race. Wallace teamed up with the U.S. Air Force Wings of Blue Parachute Team to make a memorable entrance into the legendary infield of the “World Center of Racing.” Wallace gives Master Sgt. Sean Christian, AFRS noncommissioned officer in charge of special events, a hug after landing inside the raceway from 10,000 feet above, after jumping out of a C-17 Globemaster III. Air Force Recruiting Service is entering its 12th consecutive season partnering with Richard Petty Motorsports. (Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Chance Babin)

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, does a walk around an Air Force C-17 prior to making a grand entrance to this year’s Daytona 500 race.

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, does a walk around an Air Force C-17 prior to making a grand entrance to this year’s Daytona 500 race. Wallace teamed up with the U.S. Air Force Wings of Blue Parachute Team to make a memorable entrance into the legendary infield of the “World Center of Racing.” Wallace entered the raceway from 10,000 feet above, after jumping out of a C-17 Globemaster III. Air Force Recruiting Service is entering its 12th consecutive season partnering with Richard Petty Motorsports. (Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Chance Babin)

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, gets suited up by a member of the U.S. Wings of Blue prior to making a grand entrance to this year’s Daytona 500 race

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, gets suited up by a member of the U.S. Wings of Blue prior to making a grand entrance to this year’s Daytona 500 race. Wallace teamed up with the U.S. Air Force Wings of Blue Parachute Team to make a memorable entrance into the legendary infield of the “World Center of Racing.” Wallace entered the raceway from 10,000 feet above, after jumping out of a C-17 Globemaster III. Air Force Recruiting Service is entering its 12th consecutive season partnering with Richard Petty Motorsports. (Air Force photo/Master Sgt. Chance Babin)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla, (AFNS) --

The Air Force made a special drop into the Daytona International Speedway leading up to the NASCAR Cup series opening Daytona 500 race, which will be run Feb. 16.

Bubba Wallace, driver of Richard Petty Motorsport’s No. 43 car, made a grand entrance to this year’s race. Wallace entered the raceway from 10,000 feet after jumping out of a C-17 Globemaster III with the Air Force Wings of Blue parachute team.

He typically enters the infield of the Daytona International Speedway through the Turn 4 or Turn 1 tunnel. Once Wallace landed, he celebrated with his team, family and Air Force members before getting into his car, which was waiting for him at the start and finish line for a hot lap around the track.

“I don’t know if you can have more of a grand entrance than jumping with the Wings of Blue and landing in the infield at the raceway,” Wallace said. “That was super cool. I’ve been able to go up with the Air Force a couple of times in fighter jets, and I didn’t think that could be beat. I’m still trying to decide if skydiving beat that, but jumping with the Wings of Blue was incredible. The adrenaline rush I got at the moment we stepped off – wow, what a rush that was.”

For the Air Force, having Wallace jump from a C-17 served as an opportunity to highlight the Air Force’s mission on a large stage. The event garnered a lot of attention from the media and race fans.

“This will be huge, not just for the weekend, but for the entire year,” said Master Sgt. Sean Christian, Air Force Recruiting Service noncommissioned officer in charge of special events. “This is the first time Daytona has allowed any driver to skydive into the racetrack. The experience reflects our relationship and commitment to the race team and the mission to inspire young people who are looking for careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. NASCAR has one of the biggest reaches of all the Air Force’s partnerships, and today will reinforce that messaging.”

For the C-17 crew, it was a chance to highlight one of the many tasks the cargo plane can accomplish.

“This was great,” said Maj. Eric Darwin, C-17 pilot based at Charleston Air Force Base, South Carolina. “I’m a big NASCAR fan, so being able to drop Bubba Wallace into his race car and get ready for the race is a really cool thing. There is nothing better than having the Air Force on a race car, so everyone can see our brand and then seeing this big airplane from Charleston Air Force Base. It’s great for recruiting and a great chance for all those kids out there to see what the Air Force is all about.”

Air Force Recruiting Service is entering its 12th consecutive season partnering with Richard Petty Motorsports. The Air Force’s involvement with NASCAR, and its partnership with RPM helps AFRS meet its mission of inspiring the nation’s brightest young men and women to serve.

As one of the most popular spectator sports in the United States, with a patriotic fan base, NASCAR provides an ideal recruiting landscape to reach young people interested in science, technology, engineering and math, as well as those who are mechanically inclined.

“The Air Force is excited to continue its partnership with Richard Petty Motorsports,” said Maj. Ross McKnight, AFRS’s National Events Branch chief. “The partnership provides a strategic platform to generate public awareness about the Air Force’s core values and missions. It showcases the similarities between the Air Force and NASCAR, which include strong teamwork, technology, engineering and speed. It also shows how young Americans can turn their hobbies and interests into a career in the Air Force.”

The Air Force is embarking on a total force recruiting enterprise approach to recruit the nation’s best talent. Total force recruiting encompasses recruiting efforts for all of the Air Force, including active duty, Air Force Reserve, Air National Guard, the Air Force Academy, civilian talent acquisition and Air Force ROTC.

“What you saw today with NASCAR, Fox Sports, the Daytona track, Air Force active duty, Air Force Reserve, pilots from Charleston Air Force Base, jumpers from the Air Force Academy … that was total force,” Christian said. “And not just total force inside the Air Force, it was total force with our community partners. That, along with all the moving parts we had today, made this a huge success.”

Air Force and Air Force Reserve recruiters will be on hand at the race this weekend, meeting with race fans and showing the opportunities available to serve in the Air Force, full time, part time, in or out of uniform. A total force mass enlistment is scheduled to take place in the racetrack infield prior to the race.

A highlight of this weekend’s race will be the paint scheme of the No. 43 car, which will resemble the iconic A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft, right down to the tiger shark teeth on the grill.

“The A-10 Warthog is one of the baddest planes out there,” said Wallace, whose father served in the Air National Guard. “By the time you hear it coming, it’s too late. The way we were able to portray it on our race car was super incredible.”

Engage

Twitter
RT @HQ_AFMC: Are you ready to #FlyAFM at this year's @AFmarathon?! Lace up your running shoes to kick-off the @usairforce 75th Birthday yea…
Twitter
.@DyessAFBase #Airmen tested out the new Two-Piece Undergarment Universal Integrative Ensemble protective suit to a… https://t.co/zid66FUb4w
Twitter
#ICYMI: #AirForce uniform updates; these include immediate wear of the tactical OCP duty hat and updates to duty un… https://t.co/CRkZJwjj1f
Twitter
.@HQUSAFEAFAF #Airmen are participating in Exercise African Lion 21. This is @USAfricaCommand's largest annual join… https://t.co/cugb24dAJ0
Twitter
RT @USAFCENT: #ICYMI Check out the @386thAEW supporting the #ResponsibleExit of U.S. forces from #Afghanistan. https://t.co/I7T814lOrp
Twitter
As part of the AIM HIGH Flight Academy, students flew on a KC-135 during a routine refueling mission. This program… https://t.co/em8KGDqfwK
Twitter
RT @AETCommand: Developing & fostering strategic partnerships helps improve interoperability between our nations! Check it out how the @97A
Twitter
RT @NORADCommand: NORAD needs to present credible, reliable, and globally integrated deterrence to protect Canada and the United States. #W
Twitter
Special Tactics operators participated in @AirMobilityCmd's Mobility Guardian 21 at Volk Field, Wisconsin. The team… https://t.co/28vQ4yuNcI
Twitter
Happy Birthday @USArmy! For 246 years, Soldiers with the U.S. Army have safeguarded our country from enemies forei… https://t.co/hTdJOpngQI
Twitter
RT @AETCommand: The @DoDEA approved Maxwell Elementary Middle School @MaxwellAFB as the first site for a four-year pilot program to open en…
Twitter
#Airmen and B-52 Stratofortress aircraft operating out of Morón Air Base, Spain, are demonstrating U.S. commitment… https://t.co/mVoSP7Rv9O
Twitter
The #AirForce Service Center launched a new website to serve as a single point of information for #Airmen,… https://t.co/k8VrbtpoP7
Twitter
RT @AFmuseum: Check out this view of the McDonnell XH-20 Little Henry, Bensen X-25A Gyrocopter and the American Helicopter Co. XH-26 Jet Je…
Twitter
.@AirNatlGuard #Airmen helped build Cherokee #veterans homes in Oklahoma as part of the @DeptofDefense's Innovative… https://t.co/9i0p5CgLER
Twitter
.@POTUS to #Airmen during his visit to @RAFMildenhall: "You’re the best of our country. Less than 1% of Americans… https://t.co/VlmUkvizpY
Twitter
RT @HQ_AFMC: High energy lasers kill one target at a time, & high powered microwaves can kill groups or swarms, which is one reason that TH…
Twitter
Check out the latest #AirForce Week in Photos! Which one is your favorite? See the rest at https://t.co/PUTukgX3Qe https://t.co/bWyy06fZ3k
Twitter
RT @AFGlobalStrike: 10 cadets and midshipmen from the @WestPoint_USMA, the @NavalAcademy and the @AF_Academy visited @90thMissileWing as pa…
Twitter
#ABMS will deliver decision superiority to the @usairforce & @SpaceForceDoD. This is all-domain command and contr… https://t.co/52J0YQEQhn
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,346,160
Follow Us