Chase Elliot is the 2020 Champion driver at Phoenix Raceway for the NASCAR Cup Series Championship. One member of his team, John Gianninoto, is from Tucson, Arizona. As the fueler for Elliot’s team, he plays an important role.
“You can’t really write a better story that that,” Ginanninoto said. “You get to go to yor home state and compete for a championship. To win it, it was an absolute blast.”
Giannoto played high school football at Catalina Foothills. Then he went on to play at UNLV, before trying out for multiple NFL rosters. When he tried out for the Carolina Panthers, an opportunity arose to join the Hendrick Motorsports pit crew.
“I met the coach that was here at Hendrick Motorsports, Chris Burkey,” Gianninoto said. “Luckily everything worked out and here I am 10 years later.”
Training everyday is an important part of the job in the pit crew. Giannonioto compares it to football, because they watch film, do conditioning, and workout in order to make sure they perform on Sundays.
There are plenty of good fuelers in NASCAR, but Gianninoto is truly one of the best. He owns a Guinness World Record for fueling 148 cars in one hour.
Gianninoto and the rest of the Hendrick Motorpostrs No. 9 crew are dialed in. They stay ready to defend the title on Sunday November 7.