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Path to Brazil: Getting To Know Buddy Rice, Driver, Marklund Motorsport

April 15, 2013

For years, Buddy Rice has been a success story in nearly every form of racing he’s touched. From winning the 2000 Indy Lights championship, to taking the checkered flag in the 2004 Indianapolis 500, to a win in the 2009 24 Hours of Daytona, the Arizona native and karting magnate knows what it takes to win wherever he goes.

This weekend, Rice will compete in his first Global Rallycross event at X Games in Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil, in a Volkswagen Polo prepared by Marklund Motorsport. Before packing his bags and leaving, Rice spent some time allowing us to get to know him better away from the track:

What would be be most likely to find you doing when you’re not racing?
Spending time with my wife and my daughter. We do a lot of stuff together. 

What’s on your iPod right now?
That’s a good question. It’d probably be Pennywise, Social Distortion, (hed) p.e., old school rap, a little bit of Metallica. 

Have you ever played any great pranks at the racetrack?
One time, I showed up a test, and I had a Caprice, which is like an old cop car. I came driving up, and no one knew that I had it, and I had a big wig on and a trenchcoat. I’m so punctual, I’m always early, so I showed up late, came ripping into the paddock and pulled next to the car. I stood up and got out, I had cop glasses on, screwing around like that. 

Do you have a training regimen when you’re preparing to race?
For me, it’s a lot of intervals with some cardio. But a lot of working on the ball, things like that. A lot of the new style of training. You use weights, but you don’t use them nearly as much—it’s a lot more of your body weight, putting yourself in positions that makes it much more difficult. A lot of interval training. 

How do you celebrate a victory?
It depends on the car, really! With some of the sports car stuff, you can’t do any burnouts or anything, the race car’s used up. The best thing is actually to celebrate with the team and everybody who’s involved, (like) the sponsors. It takes a team effort for everybody to make that happen, it’s not just one person. I think that’s the biggest thing. 

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received from another driver?
I guess one of the best things is just to push and never give up. 

What’s your favorite thing about your fanbase?
The diversity. 

If you could pick one driver from any era of racing to compete against you at X Games, who would you pick?
I guess I’d say A.J. Foyt, just because he won in so many different types of disciplines back in the day. He won in everything. That’d be the kind of guy you want to race against, because he can do it all.

So do you think you could beat him?
I have no idea. That guy was like a pistol!

Categories: Interviews