From Winnipeg to the Winner’s Circle: Amber Balcaen makes NASCAR history at Motor Mile Speedway.
A 24-year-old dirt racer from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, Balcaen was pursuing an unprecedented feat in her first season of NASCAR-sanctioned competition: to become the first Canadian-born female racer to win a NASCAR-sanctioned race in the United States.
Saturday night, Balcaen was in the winner’s circle…and in the record books.
Read the recap of Saturday night’s record-setting race here:
After spending all summer at Motor Mile in Radford, Virginia racing her heart out to become Canada’s first Canadian female to win a NASCAR-sanctioned race in the USA, 24-year-old Winnipeg native Amber Balcaen reached her goal on Saturday night.
Balcaen, who grew up in Charleswood, has made history by beating the pack and getting the checkered flag after rain delays threatened to douse her dreams.
“I knew I had only two races left at Motor Mile this season to put myself in victory lane,” said an elated Balcaen moments after her big win. “I came so close to winning the last race, and to get the win tonight felt just amazing, and I’m glad the weather finally cooperated.”
Balcaen, who cut her teeth in the racing world by following in the footsteps of her father and grandfather by driving the dirt tracks, decided pavement and the world of NASCAR were calling her name.
“If you would have told me when I was a little girl that I would work my way up from dirt racing to NASCAR and win in my first season on pavement, I would never have believed you. This is honestly a dream come true.”
Balcaen has one more race at Motor Mile this season. She hopes that with the help of much-needed sponsors she can continue racing towards additional wins and perhaps even a shot at the big race known as Daytona.
CTV Winnipeg recognizes Amber Balcaen as Sport Star of the Week!
“Feels amazing to be recognized by my hometown of Winnipeg and fans everywhere. Thank you to CTV for naming me sports star of the week. A great interview done by Shawn Churchill of CTV Winnipeg.” – Amber Balcaen