NASCAR: The major obstacle Frankie Muniz has overcome

Frankie Muniz, Rette Jones Racing, NASCAR (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images)
Frankie Muniz, Rette Jones Racing, NASCAR (Photo by James Gilbert/Getty Images) /

With seasonal allergies creeping in, Frankie Muniz’s return to racing has not been easy. But thanks to Claritin, he was able to weather the storm in his rookie ARCA Menards Series season.

Frankie Muniz made his long-awaited return to racing in the 2023 season, driving full-time for Rette Jones Racing behind the wheel of the No. 30 Ford in the ARCA Menards Series.

Muniz had previously competed in open-wheel racing, spending three seasons as a full-time driver in the Atlantic Championship (modern-day Indy NXT) for three different teams from 2007 to 2009.

“When I stopped racing in 2009, it was always something that I knew I wanted to go back to,” Muniz told Beyond the Flag. “I never thought it would be 13 years later, but I realized I felt like I had unfinished business in the racing world, and I wasn’t getting any younger.”

While open-wheel racing is a whole different ballgame from stock car racing, Muniz always knew that he wanted to get involved in the NASCAR world, and that is the opportunity he landed for 2023.

“I always had a desire to race NASCAR, even though it is so different from the style of racing I had done in my past, so I figured I’d throw myself off the deep end and see how it goes,” he said. “Also, when my son was born, I realized that I wanted him to grow up seeing me reaching for my dreams and working hard at something that I’m truly passionate about.

“At the time of his birth, I felt like I had done an amazing number of things and had accomplished a lot, but I wanted him to see me actually doing it, and not just telling him about what daddy used to do, if you know what I mean.”

But getting into NASCAR wasn’t easy for Frankie Muniz, given that he has struggled to combat seasonal allergies throughout most of his life.

Fortunately for him, he has long relied on Claritin, and he recently became a spokesperson for the allergy product brand.

“As someone who has severely suffered from seasonal allergies for most of my life, I have been a long-time Claritin customer,” Muniz said. “When I have an allergy attack and don’t have Claritin around, I’m literally out of commission for that day, if not two days, because my attacks hit me hard!

“So when I was approached by Claritin about becoming a partner, it made total sense. As a user/supporter of their products, it was easy to tell my story of how Claritin helps me get through my days without allergy fog and gives me 100% confidence that I’ll be ready to perform, whether I’m on set as an actor, racing cars, or just at home being a dad, without the crazy allergy symptoms.”

Muniz was familiar with Claritin for several years before becoming a brand spokesperson.

“Prior to becoming a spokesperson for Claritin, I believed that Claritin was synonymous with the words allergy relief,” he said. “I’ve been using Claritin to help relieve my allergies for as long as I can remember!”

“As a race car driver, I have to be ready to perform at my best at all times,” he said. “Considering my races are all over the country, I’m constantly having my allergies tested because of regional allergy-causing pollen, etc. When it is time for the green flag to drop, I have to be 100% focused and ready to battle, and if I’m suffering from allergy fog, itchy, watery eyes, and am constantly sneezing, it’s almost impossible to perform at a high level.

“Racing cars is such a mental game, where I need 100% focus on what I’m doing in the racecar, and if I’m having an allergy attack, all I can focus on is how to make it stop! I cannot let my allergies dictate my performance in a race, and I’m confident that is not something I ever need to worry about because I know I can take Claritin and have quick relief from the symptoms so I can perform to the best of my ability.”

Thanks to Claritin, Muniz did not have any allergy-related problems during the 2023 season.

“Fortunately, this season I have not during a race, thanks to Claritin,” he said. “That said, in a test session, we had to end the day early when I had an allergy attack because I could barely keep my eyes open, they were so itchy. Not to mention how much having a serious allergy attack takes out of you physically. I was beat.

“And not to be gross, but sneezing while wearing a helmet is not too glamorous, if you catch my drift. Hard to focus on driving at 200 miles per hour when you are trying to see through a sneezed-up visor!”

And especially at 200 miles per hour, having an allergy attack isn’t exactly favorable.

“I would say no matter where you are suffering from seasonal allergies, it is the worst,” Muniz said. “Ideally, if I were to have an attack, I’d prefer it to be in my bed at home and not racing a 3200-pound car at 200 miles per hour.

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“But once again, I always have Claritin around to help make sure that if I do have allergies, it’ll be only for a short time before I’m back at 100% of whatever I’m doing.”