Helmuth Returning to Racing at Allen Turner Finale
It’s been nearly two years since we last saw Molly Helmuth take the track as a competitor. That will change this weekend, as Helmuth will compete with the Allen Turner Pro Late Model Series at Five Flags Speedway.
It’s been nearly two years since we last saw Molly Helmuth take the track as a competitor, as she shifted her focus following the 2019 season to her marketing design company, 9D Creative. That will change this weekend, as Helmuth will compete with the Allen Turner Pro Late Model Series at Five Flags Speedway.
The opportunity to race this weekend, as well as at the Allen Turner Hyundai Snowflake 100 in December, is not one Helmuth actively sought out in hopes of returning to racing, she explained on Speed51’s “The Bullring.” Instead, it came together from conversations with one of her business clients, Bubba Pollard, along with Tyler Porter.
“I’ve been working with Bubba and all of his marketing stuff for his race team for a year. I started at the Derby last year,” explained Helmuth. “I got the opportunity to work with him and his race track at Senoia, I do all the marketing stuff at Senoia Raceway. I’ve built a relationship with Bubba, his family, his team members. I go to the race track when I can and do content for him.
“One day, Bubba stopped by because Port City [Racecars] is right around the corner from me. He’s like, ‘We’re going to get you in a car one day.’ I’m like, ‘I don’t need to be in a car.’ When I say I’m 110 percent content with not racing again, I honestly mean it. I’ve found my place in this industry with my company, 9D Creative. I enjoy doing what I do and helping other people and going to the racetrack.
“He said someone wanted to put me in a car. Well, who, where, what car? He mentioned Tyler Porter as the person who put this whole deal together. When I asked what car, he said, ‘One of my old Pro cars.’
Helmuth admitted to a little hesitancy when the plan was first presented to her, but people close to her were able to convince her to take full advantage of this opportunity.
I didn’t really jump at the opportunity. I had to really think about this and talk to everyone I know or go to for advice. I’m like, ‘Is this a good idea?’ Everyone said, ‘You’re an idiot if you don’t do it.’ I don’t know. I’m grateful for the opportunity.
The most important thing for Helmuth going into the weekend is to take time to enjoy being back behind the wheel. She admits that her efforts to work her way up the racing ladder in the past took a lot of the fun out of racing at that time, and she hopes to get that enjoyment back this time around.
“I don’t know my emotions right now. I’m excited, I’m nervous, I don’t know. I just want to have fun. I don’t want to go there and put a bunch of pressure on myself. I don’t want to set high standards or goals. I just want to have fun again.
“At the end of my career, I wasn’t having fun. You’d look at pictures of me and I was happy and stuff, but I wasn’t happy with where I was and how I was competing. I just want to have fun, race around good people like the Pollard family and Pollard team. I’m just excited to get back to the race track, get in a firesuit and see if we can make some laps.”
This weekend’s Allen Turner Pro Late Model Series finale will serve as a tuneup for teams to the Snowflake 100, the marquee Pro Late Model event on the eve of the Snowball Derby each year. That will prove to be an especially big weekend for Helmuth, with family and friends traveling from all over to see her debut in the race.
“I think Porter just really wanted to race the Snowflake, that’s just a bucket list item, and Bubba is really, really good at Pensacola. I think they just want to race the ‘Flake. I want to do laps and get experience this weekend and have a car for the ‘Flake. I have a lot of family members coming to the ‘Flake. I have race friends from back home at Evergreen Speedway that are coming. We’re going to go out there, have fun and see what we can do.”
She also doesn’t foresee this foray becoming a long-term return to racing. While she hopes to enjoy these next two races, Helmuth says her passion is still her work with 9D Creative, work she will still balance with her racing endeavors this weekend and during Snowball Derby week.
“I didn’t want to confuse people on what I'm doing with racing. I’m still 110 percent committed to 9D Creative. That is my baby. Some people think this means I’m coming back to being a race car driver. That is not me. I’m here to have fun. I’ll try to get content while I’m there for the drivers and teams I do social media for. We’ll see how it goes. I’ll try to stay focused and balance both 9D Creative and being in the race car.”
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51 Director of Digital Content – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Molly Helmuth