A Jacksonville resident may have a future in NASCAR. Seven year old Bryce Dennis got to spend time in pit row helping out NASCAR driver Austin Dillon in Chicago this past Sunday for the TheHouse.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway.
Bryce’s father Brian detailed the one-of a kind chance. “I’ve been going up there for years, getting passes to walk around. We just happened to be walking around down there. Bryce likes dressing up like Dale Earnhardt and Richard Childress spotted us and he took some pictures with him. Childress said ‘Come here I want you to meet everybody.’ He took us further into the pits and let us meet the crews. He told us to come back when the crews were going to push the cars out of the garage down to pit lane. After that, we kind of walked around for a little bit and met some of the other drivers and then we seen the crews backing the cars out. The crew looked at my little boy and asked ‘Do you want to help us?’ He helped push Austin Dillon’s car all the way down to pit lane. A storm came through so they postponed the race for a little so they asked to go into a building. Then, Austin Dillon came in the building and walked up to him and said ‘Do you want to be in an interview with me?’ Bryce said ‘well, yeah.'”
Dillon’s race car sports the #3, the same number as late NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt. Dennis looked the part, sporting Earnhardt’s BF Goodwrench helmet and uniform in the pits. Dillon is the grandson of NASCAR racing owner Richard Childress who posed with Bryce in the pits for pictures. Dennis had his helmet signed by several current NASCAR drivers before enjoying the race. Dillon qualified 10th in the race on Sunday.
Brian said it’s not the first time Bryce has hung out with his heroes. “I’ve been taking him to all kinds of racing events since he was little. He’s met the NHRA guys, the NASCAR guys. We go to country concerts together and he’s been up on stage with several bands and people.”
Bryce apparently already has his next gig lined up. “Richard Childress said to Austin Dillon ‘I think we’ve found your replacement.’ Childress asked him if he wanted to come drive for him when he gets older.”
Brian says he enjoys spending time with his son giving him the opportunity to meet his favorite stars whenever he can. Both of them were spotted on camera multiple times during the telecast on Sunday enjoying the race.