Frankie Muniz opens up on putting his career into fifth gear, why he’s chasing Victory Lane

Frankie Muniz is able to begin his engine and pursue his dream of knowledgeable stock-car racing championship and can get to try this formally beginning in February at Daytona Worldwide Speedway.

Muniz, the previous little one actor who starred in “Malcolm within the Center,” “Massive Fats Liar” and “Agent Cody Banks,” introduced in January he could be racing within the ARCA Menards Sequence full-time beginning this 12 months, starting with the Daytona race on Feb. 18. He will likely be competing within the No. 30 Ford Mustang for Rette Jones Racing.

The 37-year-old Muniz will likely be a newcomer within the ARCA Sequence however isn’t a novice with regards to auto racing. He acquired his begin in open-wheel racing within the mid-2000s earlier than he joined the stock-car scene.


Actor Frankie Muniz on the forty second Toyota Professional/Movie star Race – Qualifying Day on April 15, 2016, in Lengthy Seaside, California.
(Albert L. Ortega/Getty Photographs))

He raced in Formulation BMW USA and Champ Automotive Atlantic Sequence. He stated his journey was not like most racers.

“To be trustworthy, I don’t have a typical story of people that develop into race automobile drivers,” Muniz defined to Fox Information Digital. “I used to be only a race fan. I feel it’s a kind of issues that individuals say, like ‘Oh, I wish to be a race automobile driver’ however how do you really develop into a race automobile driver if your loved ones isn’t concerned in it and all that. 

“So, I began once I was 19. I did the professional/superstar race in Lengthy Seaside (California) and I received that. After which a professional staff requested me to come back only for enjoyable to do a take a look at. I used to be scared out of my thoughts exhibiting up that day, like getting in a correct race automobile. However I instantly had pace, so we knew the pure skill was there. After which as soon as I acquired to the automobile I am going like, ‘Man, that is what I wish to do.’ Nevertheless it’s a kind of issues, even then, you continue to need to, you realize, to achieve that subsequent stage. It’s loads tougher than simply moving into the automobile and going quick. There are such a lot of points that need to be put collectively and I simply labored laborious at it.”

Muniz stated he by no means thought he could be racing however believes it is what he was meant to do.


Frankie Muniz attends the 42nd Toyota Grand Prix Of Long Beach Pro/Celebrity Practice on April 15, 2016.

Frankie Muniz attends the forty second Toyota Grand Prix Of Lengthy Seaside Professional/Movie star Observe on April 15, 2016.
(Leon Bennett/WireImage)

“It’s not one thing that I believed I might ever do but it surely occurred,” he stated. “And now that I’m doing it, even once I acquired out of the automobile this previous weekend, I referred to as my spouse and I stated, ‘That is precisely what I used to be presupposed to do.’ I really feel essentially the most comfy within the automobile, although I’ve, on the ovals and stuff, so little expertise. It simply appears like the place I’m presupposed to be and that’s a reasonably cool feeling.”

Muniz stated he initially deliberate to affix the ARCA Menards Sequence final 12 months however had hassle corralling sponsorships.

“This has been sort of a 12 months and a half within the making. I made a decision I needed to return racing and the plan was really for me to do ARCA final 12 months,” Muniz instructed Fox Information Digital. “So, I did some late mannequin stuff on the finish of 2021 and did a bunch of testing with the intention that I used to be going to go ARCA Racing. Granted, sponsorship fell by, making an attempt to place all of the items along with the staff and every part like that – it simply didn’t occur.”

Muniz stated he was comfortable, in a method, he didn’t race in 2022 as a result of he realized he nonetheless had a lot to study inventory automobile racing.

“I do know that there’s going to be tracks I’m going to wrestle at this 12 months and there will likely be ones I’m gonna excel at. I simply acquired to benefit from these and be taught as shortly as doable on the different ones,” he defined.

For Muniz, competing in skilled stock-car racing is extra than simply attaining his personal goals. He has greater targets than that.

The New Jersey native, who achieved two Golden Globe Award nominations and an Emmy Award nomination, as a toddler, defined to Fox Information Digital that being a father rejuvenated him. He stated he needed to point out his son that he, too, might flip his personal wild goals into actuality.


“, it’s humorous as a result of I’m really a really high-stress particular person. I prefer to be busy however I virtually make myself so busy that I can’t even accomplish issues that I would like,” Muniz stated. “It’s simply my persona. That stated, once I had my son I used to be sitting within the hospital and taking a look at him and I used to be making an attempt to think about like the kind of father I used to be going to be or what he was going to develop up pondering of his dad. And me, I’ve achieved a lot in my life, proper? I used to be an actor. Emmy, Golden Globe nominated. Like, I wouldn’t consider it however I used to be. I raced vehicles up to now, I used to be in band, I toured all around the world. I owned a bunch of companies. So, I’ve achieved loads, up to now. However in that second, I used to be like, I’m nothing.

Frankie Muniz at the NASCAR Cup Series practice at Phoenix Raceway in Avondale, Arizona, on Nov. 4, 2022.

Frankie Muniz on the NASCAR Cup Sequence apply at Phoenix Raceway in Avondale, Arizona, on Nov. 4, 2022.
(Mark J. Rebilas-USA Right this moment Sports activities)

“I don’t wish to simply be residence. I needed him to see me reaching for a purpose or working laborious towards one thing and discovering success in it or not, proper, as a result of there’s clearly a lesson to be taught that every part’s not going to occur the way in which you hope, proper? However I needed him to develop up in that setting of seeing me attempt to succeed at one thing. 

“And once I look again at all the issues that I’ve achieved, racing is the one factor that I felt like I had unfinished enterprise. Clearly, I’d like to proceed performing and I’m nonetheless doing issues right here or there but it surely’s not one thing that’s as much as me. It takes producers, the writers, every part has to come back collectively to supply me a job or no matter it might be. And I can work so laborious as an actor, actually get into the character and provides what I feel and I consider is my greatest efficiency ever and also you go, ‘It was weak.’”


Muniz admitted that dwelling within the Caribbean or transferring to Costa Rica and simply browsing all day sounds “actually interesting” but it surely wasn’t his and his spouse’s persona to simply sit again and do nothing. He stated when he commits to one thing he offers it “100%.”

Muniz understood he actually solely has one season to essentially show himself as a driver.

“I wish to do it for my household. I wish to do it for myself,” Muniz stated. “I wish to do it as a result of the enjoyment I get… I imply, racing has such highs and such lows. However these highs, like there’s nothing I might examine it to.”

He added that in certainly one of his assessments he completed as one of many prime 10 quickest on the monitor.

Muniz has had a short profession in racing. He raced within the 2004 and 2005 Toyota Professional/Movie star Race in California. He participated in additional than a dozen races within the 2006 Formulation BMW USA season and in 2007 he participated within the Champ Automotive Atlantic Sequence.

In 2022, Muniz did a take a look at at Daytona within the ARCA Menards Sequence.

Frankie Muniz, left, celebrates with Champ Car driver Rhys Millen after winning the 29th Annual Pro/Celebrity Race in Long Beach, California, April 9, 2005.

Frankie Muniz, left, celebrates with Champ Automotive driver Rhys Millen after profitable the twenty ninth Annual Professional/Movie star Race in Lengthy Seaside, California, April 9, 2005.
(Reuters/Lucy Nicholson)


Nick Sanchez is the defending ARCA Menards Sequence champion.