SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) -- The last two years have certainly been rewarding and special for driver Hailie Deegan.
“She's a female driver that can get it done,” team owner Bill McAnally said.
Deegan, 18, has been winning races and challenging for the K&N Pro Series championship in Nascar's minor leagues, which has put her on Nascar's fast-track to race in one of the sport’s national series sooner rather than later.
“There's a chance that she could make her way through the ranks and one day race for a cup team with the best team owners in the world,” her father, Brian, told FOX40. “It's crazy, like the Gibbs, the Hendricks, all these guys are talking about her.”
Talk, though, is one thing. Giving her a seat is another, and Deegan herself knows she has plenty more to learn -- but she is getting closer to her goal.
“What we do next year comes with what is going to be best for my career long-term,” she said. “It's a long-term decision of what is going to get me to the top level.”
Deegan has already stepped it up this year, having raced in the ARCA Menards Series, which allowed her to drive and get experience on bigger tracks.
“I think the K&N West Series has done a lot for me, but I think that, eventually, we'll have to move on to a bigger level, bigger tracks,” Deegan said.
Deegab can drive and win, but she's also a social media magnet.
“I have on social media, I just hit a half-million (followers), so I'm pretty pumped about that,” she said.
A large following, plus her own merchandising brand, are two more things Nascar loves.
“Hailie's done a good job at building her brand and I think that's a really important part. But in racing, results are what matter in the end,” Brian Deegan said.
Right now, Deegan is doing both.