CONCORD, N.C. - Driving a race car is far from an easy task. Due to the high speeds, the need to focus on what's ahead of you from the cockpit and proximity of the competition, additional help is advised to successfully navigate your way around the racing surface. Enter the spotter. 

Each week, this team member climbs to the highest section of the track and communicates with the driver throughout the race. The spotter helps the driver fill in the gaps of what they cannot see from the car and provide valuable information throughout the race. For road courses, teams will use multiple spotters as the track often stretches out of view for just one spotter to handle.

Bradley Newman is one of these secondary spotters, working with the No. 48 Ally Racing team. A native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Newman’s experience in the racing industry began at the grassroots level. As a teenager, he and his uncle helped two local teams with setting up the car and working in the pits. Along the way, the opportunity presented itself to jump on the spotter's stand.

"We had a guy that spotted for us regularly, but he had to go on vacation one weekend," Newman said. "I got handed a headset, spotted that night, and said, 'this is awesome.'"

After gaining several years of experience as a short-track spotter, Newman made his way into the world of NASCAR in 2020. Due to the pandemic causing travel issues, spotters were in high demand. For his first national series race, Newman was able to land a spotting role with a NASCAR Xfinity Series team at Road America. From there, the connections he had made within the industry began to snowball into new opportunities.

"From 2018 to late 2020, I was just a guy that people called. I didn't really have any full-time stuff. The last two years I've been pretty much full time," Newman said. "It's really just networking; it's more of a spotter network."

One of these connections turned out to be crew chief of the No. 48 Ally Racing team, Greg Ives. While working for a team in the Super Late Model ranks in the Easter Bunny Twin 150s at Hickory Motor Speedway, Newman met Ives (who was the crew chief for part of the event) in the pits. In need of another secondary spotter for his driver Alex Bowman, Ives gave Newman the chance to join the No. 48 Ally Racing team on road courses for the 2022 season.

Currently, Newman works with Bowman’s full-time spotter Kevin Hamlin as well as Justin Withers, who also serves as another secondary spotter for the team on road courses. Newman credits his success can be traced back to his confidence when communicating on the radio.

"Being confident on the radio is the most important thing," Newman said. "You can’t second-guess your calls or show any kind of weakness because it translates directly to your driver. You have to be really confident in yourself."

When the NASCAR Cup Series is not competing at a track turning left and right, Newman continues his passion at the local level, working with several young drivers looking to move up through the ranks themselves.