On Saturday, November 18th, 2017 the Colorado National Speedway racing family lost one of its brightest young stars. Driver Makayla Grote, just 20 years old, was known to all at the Speedway where she practically grew up turning wrenches and grinding fenders with elite racers from around the country. Makayla discovered her passion for racing while competing in Go Karts at a very young age, but truly began to blossom in her sport when she entered the Pure Stock Division at CNS. Never was there a better ambassador for her sport, as Makayla was proof that anyone can achieve their dreams with hard work and dedication. If you wanted to find Makayla on a Saturday night, look no further than the Hot Pits at CNS, where she could always be found competing in her own race car, helping a fellow race car with theirs, or standing behind a video camera when she couldn’t get her hands dirty on a car. Behind the wheel of the car she built (and re-built) with her family, Makayla was respected by her fellow drivers and consistently placed in the top ten in both the Pure Stock and Super Stock Divisions. In late 2017, Makayla made the jump to the Grand American Modified Division, and was looking forward to building upon her experience at an advanced level.
Off of the track, Makayla was a humble and generous soul who gave without any thought of herself. Her kind and tender heart was worn on her sleeve, and despite balancing both a full time schedule of college courses and racing, Makayla still made time to volunteer in her community and organize special events for children in need. Her smile was infectious and blindingly bright, and even among her competitors and rivals, she was known for her compassion. The Sportsman of the Year award is generally given only to those in the racing community who demonstrate the very finest moral fiber in every aspect of the Sport. Such was her character that Makayla won it twice in her short racing career.
The racing community is more than just a network of people who can’t wait to turn left. We are a family. Today, our family grieves as we mourn the loss of a Daughter any family would be proud to call their own. Makayla Grote was loved deeply, and will be missed.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the Grote Family at this difficult time. A GoFundMe page has been established in Makayla’s name, and donations are greatly appreciated.
(Images courtesy of Starr photo)