SARASOTA, FLORIDA – History was made on Sunday June 25 in Sonoma, California when Alon Day became the first driver from Israel to ever compete in NASCAR’s top series. Day placed 32nd in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in the Toyota/Save Mart 350 driving the BK Racing No. 23 EarthWater Limited Toyota Camry. Day, a 25 year-old native of Tel Aviv, Israel, was named Israel’s 2016 “Athlete of the Year”. As a result of his outstanding achievements in NASCAR’s Euro Series, Day has the unique distinction of being the first stock car driver from outside of North America to be selected for the NASCAR NEXT program, an initiative to feature NASCAR’s future stars.
Day came to Sonoma upon the heels of being crowned “King of Brands Hatch”, as a result of hiss victory in the NASCAR Whelen Euro race in England. Day intends to compete for the 2017 NASCAR Euro Series Championship with plans to race again in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen, as well as select races in the NASCAR XFINITY Series the remainder of the 2017 season.
“I’m very excited to make my debut in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series,” said Day. “Being the first Israeli who is going to race in NASCAR’s highest Series is a dream come true. I must thank BK Racing, EarthWater Limited, as well as Hall of Famer Franco Harris, Super Donuts, and Silversport for giving me this awesome opportunity.”
What makes Day’s story so compelling is that until 2011, all forms of motorsports competition were banned in Israel, including outdoor go-cart racing. Day was required to hone his driving skills playing video games. In NASCAR, unlike traditional professional sports where the team pays the athlete to compete, race car drivers are required to pay their teams for the costs associated with their race cars, crew, and support facilities. For example, a set of tires cost $2,500 with a typical race requiring 6 sets of tires.
In order to assist Alon Day and other Israeli motorsports athletes to represent Israel in international competition, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt charity has been established, Racing For Israel, Inc. Tax deductible donations to help Alon compete at Sonoma and elsewhere in the U.S. may be made by visiting www.RacingForIsrael.org.