Christmas Abbott loves CrossFit and Olympic lifting, she wrote on her Facebook fan page. She’s only 5’3″ and weighs 115 pounds, which she also notes means that she likes “surprising people with my strength.”
But she also likes tackling “any challenge that is said can’t be done.” Perhaps one of these was joining a NASCAR pit crew. It’s a physically demanding job where not only strength but speed are of the essence. Abbott has proved that she both and joined a pit crew as the first female ever in NASCAR history.
ABC News featured Abbott last month reporting she was trained for the job by Turner Motorsports. Her duty on the crew is in the front tire position where she cranks off all five lug nuts, pulls off the tire, replaces it with a fresh one and puts the lug nuts back on. Then repeat on the other side. According to ABC, the entire pit crew’s efforts take about 12 seconds.
Abbott’s coach Shaun Peet told ABC he thought bringing on a woman was a publicity stunt at first. Of which, “I wanted no part of,” he said.
“And I think, I was convinced, when I saw her. She ran a 6.8 [second] right side the other day, which for as long as she’s being doing it is exceptional,” Peet said, according to ABC.
Watch ABC’s report:
On her CrossFit Journal, Abbott wrote:
“I love changing tires. The adrenaline of running in front of a car and then having the car zip by you, 50 to 60 miles an hour behind you … ,” Abbott starts. And when she so much as hears the sound of the air gun, “It makes me want to go fast,” she says. “It’s like hearing ‘3, 2, 1 … go.’”
In addition to being the first woman on a NACAR pit crew, Abbott owns CrossFit Invoke in North Carolina.
The Christmas baby — if you hadn’t guessed by the name — just turned 31 and is celebrating by hiking in the Dominican mountains, according to her Facebook page.
Watch this YouTube video featuring Abbott:
This story has been updated to correct the spelling of Christmas’ last name to read “Abbott.”