DENTON — Pictures from FIA Rally Star show Denton native Chase Gerer speeding around a track in Italy, competing against 43 drivers from around the world for a chance to compete in six rallies in Europe with a full professional race team.
"The trip to Italy was part of a program called the FIA Rally Star Program. This was put on by the FIA, which is essentially the international governing body of motor sports. It was basically put on as sort of a talent search," Gerer said.
The race course in Italy was similar to a rallycross track, which includes both dirt and pavement and jumps.
"It was a three-day event, all competing in these cars called crosscarts. They're kind of like a little buggy with a motorcycle engine and a sequential shifter," Gerer explained.
Gerer qualified by racing on a simulator at home, one of only two drivers from the U.S. to qualify.
He didn't get chosen to compete in the European rallies but he's not complaining.
"It was awesome, though, getting to meet everyone from North and South America. Drivers from all walks of life...It was an amazing experience. Definitely a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," said Gerer.
Now that he's back in the U.S., he's going to focus on the BGM series he competes in in Lewistown and the national AMSoil Off-Road Championship Series while also working his day job as an MRI tech.
"It can get complicated at times but it's absolutely worth it," Gerer said.