INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.—The Brickyard 400 will have a name change this year in order to honor a war hero and huge racing fan.
This year’s race will be known as the Samuel Deeds 400 at the Brickyard as tribute to Gunnery Sgt. Samuel Deeds, who was injured while serving in Iraq. While deployed, Deeds came across an improvised explosive device (IED) and exposed himself to the device in order to save the lives of his fellow Marines. Deeds underwent more than 30 surgeries for severe injuries he sustained in the blast.
The honor comes as part of Crown Royal’s contest to name the race after an American hero.
“I’ve been a NASCAR fan for as long as I can remember, so the reality of having my name on a track with such rich history and meaning is beyond words,” Deeds said. “I am so grateful to all of those who took the time to hear my story and vote for me. I can’t wait to attend the race and dedicate that special weekend to all fellow servicemen and women who put their lives on the line every day.”
Deeds is retired and lives with his wife and two sons in Kentucky.
For more information about the contest and the American hero, click here.