FORT WORTH, Texas (August 24, 2018) – A former two-sport athlete at Hebron High School in Carrollton, Texas, is set to make history this weekend in one of NASCAR’s national racing series.
Jesse Iwuji (pronounced A-WOO-G), a surface warfare officer and lieutenant in the United States Navy, will become the first active duty naval officer to start a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race when the green flag flies Sunday at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Ontario (1:30 p.m. CT, FOX Sports 1). He will be driving the No. 34 Chevrolet Silverado for Reaume Brothers Racing.
“It’s going to be a really cool experience, but something I think a lot of people who are out there serving can see and hopefully it helps inspire them and motivate them to go after their goals and dreams because it’s something a lot of people think they can’t do or couldn’t do,” the 31-year-old told NASCAR.com earlier this week. “Hopefully with me doing it now, just showing them, ‘Hey it’s possible, if you want to get into racing, you can do it. If you want to get into anything else in life that seems super out of reach, you can do it.’ “
Born in Dallas, Iwuji was a First-Team, All-District outside linebacker on the football team and earned three letters in track while at Hebron High School before graduating in 2005. He was recruited by the U.S. Naval Academy, where he’d compete in both sports for all four years.
After graduating from the Naval Academy in 2010, Iwuji continued his service in the Navy, which included two deployments to the Arabian Gulf.
Iwuji always has had an affinity for racing, taking part in drag racing while in college and moving over to late model racing after graduating. He competed full-time in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West in 2016, finishing 10th in the point standings. He also was awarded the Diverse Driver Award, which is given to a minority/female driver who exemplifies outstanding performance both on and off the race track in encouraging awareness and interaction with NASCAR and motorsports.
Still an active duty officer in the Navy Reserve, Iwuji has 39 career starts in the K&N Pro Series East and West. Many of his sponsors along the way have had a military focus on background, including Zulu Audio, which is owned by a Naval Academy alum, and will be one of the sponsors on his No. 34 Chevy for Reaume Brothers Racing this weekend.