Apr 17, 2016 9:59 PM by Ross Field
Some of NASCAR's best drivers have been short in stature. Jeff Gordon is 5'8", Tony Stewart is 5'9". They've both become giants at the highest level after racing sprint cars on dirt.
Then, there's local fan favorite Rico Abreu, who standS 4'4".
He was born with a condition that's prevented him from growing. Yet, for what he lacks in size he more than makes up for with talent and inspiration.
Rico Abreu was born with achondroplasia, a bone disorder that's the most common type of dwarfism.
But that hasn't crushed his competitive spirit.
"Anyone can get in these race cars but you have to be competitive. That's why I show up because I love to win races, said Abreu.
And win he does.
Abreu won nearly one-fifth of his races in 2015 and became a back-to-back champion in the Chili Bowl.
His success helped him land a deal to race in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
"Not too many have had the chance to race in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and I'm going to take advantage of that this year and hopefully buck off a win for my team," said Abreu.
Standing 4'4", Abreu has his cars adapted to fit his height and wants to inspire others with dwarfism to find a way to do what they love as well.
"I've been put in a very unique situation and I love everything about it. I'd like to see people strive to do what they love and follow through their and never let anyone tell them they can't do it," said Abreu.
After all, on the track it's not about how tall you are, it's about who has the biggest heart.
"It's all about how much heart and how much determination you put into something and the sacrifices you'll make for it. If you really want it you'll do something to go get it," said Abreu.