To live life differently, you have to slow down and think before you go fast. And Antron Brown goes really fast.
“I learned so much from my dad and my uncle. They loved NHRA drag racing and working on race cars. So I grew up holding a wrench working on things in the yard, and I developed a love for it. I worked on anything and everything, and I wanted to learn. And I surrounded myself in it. That’s the key. You have learned it and you have to live it.”
Antron lives his professional life on the edge. He pilots a nitromethane drag racer at record-breaking speeds surpassing 330 miles per hour. These cars accelerate faster than a jet fighter plane and a NASA space shuttle. He’s the first African American to win any major U.S. auto racing season championship — a victory stand summit he’s already climbed twice. But if you talk to him off the track, the man is less thrill-seeker and more fulfillment-seeker. His purpose is to be a family man for his wife, Billie Jo, and their three children, and a motivational speaker for inner-city kids.
“If you want to do anything in life, you need to prepare yourself for when the opportunity comes. Anything is possible if you’re willing to learn, you have the right attitude, you push yourself, you’re always working hard, always planning and always looking for that edge.”
“I believe that anything is possible. But planning makes it all possible.”
This three-time top fuel champ has his sights set on more triumphs and titles, to be sure. But his future vision goes far beyond victories.
“Thinking about legacy, in the future, I want to own my own team and lead them to success. I want to be a mentor and challenge the next generation. I want to help young people to understand what’s out there. I want to retire someday, so I’m saving and I’m protecting myself and my family. And I want to pass things on to my kids. I’m working with my financial representative as we speak to make a plan to make those things happen. I believe that anything is possible. But planning makes it all possible.”
Antron’s legacy is on the right track. In 2013, Antron’s oldest son, Anson, and daughter, Arianna, joined NHRA Jr. Drag Racing for youngsters. That year, Anson won six titles as a rookie. And Antron’s youngest son, Adler, competed as a rookie last year.