By Abbey Grace Venham
MONTICELLO, Ga. — While other Piedmont Academy female students are spending time in traditional sports, Laynie Buice is chasing a unique dream. The 16-year-old racing prodigy wants to be a professional race car driver one day.
So far, she’s shown progress by recently winning a race among all of the state champion racers across the country in Las Vegas, Nevada.
“I’ve done soccer, gymnastics, basketball, softball, cheerleading, I’ve done it all,” Buice said. “Racing is the thing that I’ve just loved the most, and I just like being at the track. I like everything about it.”
It wasn’t until Buice was 10 years old and obtained her first go-kart that her passion was ignited.
Buice was with her father, Gregg Buice, while on his way to work when they passed a go-kart shop in Lovejoy.
After checking the place out, Buice acquired her first go-kart and, soon thereafter, began racing her dad at the Lamar County Speedway in Barnesville.
Since then, Buice has worked her way up to racing legend and pro late models in places such as Atlanta Motor Speedway and in Florida and South Carolina, too.
She mainly raced legend cars — which are 10 feet long and three feet wide with 148 horsepower — at Atlanta Motor Speedway and across the south in places like Florida and South Carolina.
Buice also raced the pro late model — a car that’s similar to NASCAR with a 404 horsepower — in Cordele, and she plans to race a late model stock car in the Carolinas in 2023.
The competition she faces poses lots of different obstacles for Buice. In fact, Racing primarily with boys — only two or three females usually competing alongside her — has been one she’s seemed to overcome.
Her mom, Amy Buice, highlighted how her daughter hugs the track regardless of her competitors.
“No boy wants to be beat by her,” Amy Buice said. “And I can’t tell you how many times they’ve punted her when she was winning the race.”
Buice doesn’t do it alone.
Along with her family’s support, Buice recognized the impact each coach has had on her career to this point.
“When I raced legends I had a coach then that taught me all I needed to know for the legend car,” Buice said. “And then when I went to pro late models, I had a coach that taught me everything I needed to know and helped guide me.”
On top of her coaches’ guidance, Buice has been 100% committed to the sport she loves. And that means she’s missed out on proms, football games and outings with friends for her pursuit of a racing career.
There’s never a question about fear of missing out with Buice, and she wants her spectators to notice that in her ability. Missing events, training on an at-home racing simulator called IRace, and watching videos to fully prepare for a race are the ways Buice is proactive in her training.
Her dream is to keep speeding and hopefully shift into gear on a NASCAR track someday. At her current velocity, the professional circuit is around the next curve.
“I think she’ll do something professionally someday, whether that be for NASCAR or on a smaller team, but I know Laynie,” Amy Buice said. “Laynie is very strong willed and very determined. I fully believe and have no doubt in my mind that her dreams will come true in some way, shape, form, or fashion.”