Mackena Bell to Run NASCAR Nationwide Series at Phoenix
By Roger Diez
Have you ever wanted to sponsor a big-time race car? Well, now’s your chance to sponsor a NASCAR Nationwide racer in one of the final races of the 2014 season. Carson City’s own Mackena Bell, who started racing an Outlaw Kart at 11 years old at Champion Speedway, will make her debut in one of NASCAR’s premier touring series on November 8. Bell will drive the Rick Ware Racing number 23 Chevrolet Camaro in the NASCAR Nationwide series DAV200 “Honoring America’s Veterans” race at Phoenix International Raceway. She is at the Rick Ware Racing shops in Thomasville, North Carolina today having her seat fitted to the car. Bell will be one of only a few female drivers to compete in the Nationwide series, following in the footsteps of Patty Moise, Erin Crocker, Joanna Long, Jennifer Jo Cobb, and Danica Patrick, who is now a Sprint Cup regular. Bell is also the only female graduate of NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity Program to race in the Nationwide series.
Rick Ware Racing, the team that Bell will drive for at Phoenix, calls itself “The Biggest Little Team in Motorsports”, a fitting slogan for somebody who grew up near Reno. In addition to the Nationwide series, RWR has campaigned cars in the Camping World Truck series, the ARCA series, the Trans-Am series, and also AMA Arenacross motorcycles. Former drivers include Kerry and Jeffrey Earnhardt and Bobby Hamilton Jr.
This is an important career move for Bell, who has been running in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East the past two seasons. It means that she will be certified by NASCAR to run bigger tracks, something that makes her more valuable to teams in the ARCA, Camping World Truck, and Nationwide series. But in order to do this, she needs funding. That is why Bell’s family held a golf tournament last year to raise money, and will do so again in 2015. But here’s a chance for businesses and individuals in Carson City to get behind one of their own and help her achieve her dreams. If you want to help, you can donate via PayPal, or to the account set up at the City National Bank branch at 1811 East College Parkway in Carson City. Call (775) 885-1221 or stop in at the branch if you have questions. The account number is 365200920 and the routing number is 122016066. If you are considering becoming a primary partner for Mackena’s ongoing racing efforts, you can contact her on her website or via Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram using her name.
Bell was also chosen this year as a spokesperson for Lung Force, dedicated to fighting lung cancer. She hopes to have Lung Force decals on the car at Phoenix, and will be participating in a walk to raise funds for Lung Force on November 15.