Antron Brown to test stock car
CONCORD, N.C. -- NHRA star Antron Brown wants to give left turns a shot.
The 2012 Top Fuel champion will test a Toyota stock car for Rev Racing, an academy-style developmental organization for NASCAR's diversity program, on Tuesday at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Va.
Brown and Rev Racing owner Max Siegel insists this is not a gimmick, that they are serious about finding out whether the skills of the 37-year-old black driver will transfer from drag racing to stock cars.
"I wouldn't be doing this if I wasn't serious," said Brown, who drives for Don Schumacher Racing in the NHRA. "That's it in a nutshell."
If the test on the .416-mile oval is successful, Siegel will look at possibly putting Brown in a late-model race before the end of 2013 if the NHRA schedule permits.
Brown said he's not willing to look deep into the future until after the test to see whether he can drive a stock car.
"Right now, I'm in a bowl of water where I can swim," he said of the NHRA. "I don't want to go to a bowl of water and drown."
But if he doesn't drown in the test, Brown wants to take this to the highest level possible. So does Siegel, whose organization has developed future NASCAR stars Kyle Larson and Darrell Wallace Jr. since it began competing full time in 2010.
He doesn't want to rush out and say Brown will someday drive in the Sprint Cup Series because "the main thing for us is to have credibility on the track."
Brown and Siegel began talking about this possibility three years ago. Until now, Brown couldn't find a way to work it into his schedule.
He insists winning the 2012 Top Fuel title to complete a goal in the NHRA wasn't a factor and that exploring stock cars isn't a "midlife crisis."
"I'm very competitive in whatever I do," Brown said. "I just want to compete. When I go out there I want to learn the right way. I've positioned myself for the right way to do that with Rev Racing.
"I know I can go straight. But now I've got to put a left turn in there. We'll see where it goes from there."
David Newton covers NASCAR for ESPN.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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