CHARLOTTE, N.C. - In college, Brehanna Daniels played basketball, but she went pro in a very different sport, and made history doing so. Daniels is the first African-American woman to work as a member of a NASCAR pit crew.
Daniels’ job is to remove lug nuts and tires as quickly as possible, a crucial role in getting a car back in the race. In order to prove she had what it takes, she had to try out just like any other sport.
“It was tough. We were dying. I was dying,” she told Fox 46.
But even on day one Daniels thought this could be the start of something special.
“I even beat some of the boys I went against,” she said. “So I was like, ‘I know I did good.’”
Not long after, Daniels was invited to train as a professional pit crew member. Not bad for someone who didn’t even realize this could be a job.
“I’m telling you, I was never a NASCAR fan,” she said. “Like, it wasn’t even a thought. It was just basketball, track and that’s it.”
Within a matter of years Daniels was the first African-American woman in a pit crew at a NASCAR race. This year she moved up to NASCAR’s premiere racing series. And last month, she made history yet again, working as a tire changer at the Daytona 500.