Myatt Snider: The Nicest Kid in Town

    When I chose to write my next driver profile on Myatt Snider, I naively thought it would be a walk in the park, considering how he’d easily been my favorite driver in the NASCAR Xfinity Series the past two seasons. However, my so-called ‘walk in the park’ turned into an unclear path, as I started my research for the piece, realizing just how much I didn’t know about the driver and even more so, just how much a simple Google search couldn’t tell me about him. Admittedly, I felt overwhelmed, worried I didn’t have nearly any new and exciting material for my readers, that they couldn’t already find simply through a search engine, as I had myself. Left unsure of what else to do, I decided to test my luck as I quickly composed a tweet about working on my latest piece, tagging Myatt, hoping that maybe, just maybe, he might see it. The next morning, as I rolled out of bed and glanced at my phone through tired eyes, a reply to my tweet stood out amongst the others. A response in the form of a meme, from an account with a little blue checkmark, belonging to none other than Myatt Snider. With the help of the man himself, my worries evaporated.

     Myatt M. Snider was born on December 30th, 1994 in Charlotte, North Carolina to Marty and Andrea Snider. His father, Marty, was just starting to embark on what would become a long-lasting career in the broadcasting side of NASCAR. This, however, was not the only influence on a young Myatt who explained to me that, “growing up around the Charlotte area, racing was always around me.” With the world of racing constantly surrounding him, Myatt was interested to see what all the fuss was about and decided he wanted to get a taste of it for himself. At ten years old, Myatt began racing Bandolero cars (race cars designed for younger ages, that serve as a stepping stone between a quarter midget and an actual race car) and continued to race them for the next four years. “But during that time, it was just a fun thing to do after school,” he explained, “so basically from 2005-2009 it was a hobby.”  After earning his first wins in Bandoleros on both oval tracks as well as road courses, things began to take a turn for Myatt, as he realized that racing was no longer just a hobby, and then “in 2010 things took off.” 

     By the end of 2009, Myatt had upgraded from Bandelros to Legends cars, “this was my first big boy race car per se.”  He began to prepare for the Winter Heat, a series of ten races (five on the half-mile oval, and half on the road course configuration) at Charlotte Motor Speedway. He would go on to win races on the road course which he says “cemented my love of road courses.”  As Myatt continued on in his Legends car career, he continued to excel well into 2012 which became “probably my most successful year to date by that point.” He’d go on to win track championships at Charlotte, Concord Speedway, and Atlanta Motor Speedway as well as becoming the winner of the National Triple Crown and the National Championship race. 

     After a more than successful run in Legends cars, Myatt decided he was ready to take another step up the ladder in his racing career as he moved forward on to late models. After an “ok” test session in a late model in 2011, he made his late model race debut in 2012 running races for his cousin Jay Hedgecock, who just so happened to build Late Model Stock chassis.  He’d run races at Caraway Speedway, “which to this day is still one of my favorite late-model tracks”, as well as at Kenley (Southern National Motorsports Park). Snider ran well at both tracks, earning top fives on occasion, but in 2013, Myatt and his team went headfirst into starting his Late Model Stock Car career. Despite running every race at Caraway and select races at Kenley, a win didn’t come until the fall. “It took me a while, but eventually that fall I got my first win racing in late models. Tire conservation was a whole new world to me, and it was the biggest hurdle for me.” After overcoming the hurdle of tire conservation, Snider would round out his 2013 late model run with Rookie of the Year awards at both Kenley and Caraway.

     In 2014 success in late models continued to arise for a young Myatt Snider, thanks to a crew chief swap and a shop move, which “made a big difference” according to him. Now running full-time at Kenley as well as Caraway, Myatt became a regularly consistent player in each race, even gathering wins on a handful of occasions at both tracks, “Kenley was harder, but always more rewarding.” To fill in the gaps of when he was not running at either Kenley or Caraway, you could find Myatt racing at South Boston Speedway, where he even competed in 3x Daytona 500 winner Denny Hamlin’s Short Track Showdown. “I ended up racing with Denny a good bit in that race,” Myatt recalls of his performance, which resulted in a 7th place finish. 

     As the new year arrived, a new opportunity was presented to Myatt with the establishment of the CARS Late Model Stock Car Tour, the first late model touring series since the United Auto Racing Association closed down operations the previous year. “We did really well in this. I was the most consistent finisher that year, but a win always seemed to escape me,” Myatt tells me about his run in the series. Through the ten race tour, he finished in the top ten in all ten races, five races of which he finished in the top five. However, he’d, unfortunately, lose the championship by just six points. Despite the loss, Snider’s run in the 2015 Myrtle Beach 400 would make up for the loss in a big way. After taking control of the lead at the halfway break in the race, Snider would hold on to it until the very end, securing the victory. “That was probably the biggest win of my career up until that point. Still one of my favorite ones too.”  

     Myatt would make his ARCA series debut the following year at Toledo Speedway in 2016 with Cunningham Motorsports driving the #22, with Louisiana Hot Sauce coming on board to sponsor. “It actually went terrible when we went to test there. I felt like I couldn’t get it right,” Myatt relayed to me, looking back on his first experience in an ARCA car. As race day stood on the horizon for Toledo, Myatt felt more sorry than safe about his chances of having a good run, based on the results of his lackluster test session. However, his doubt and worry would be contraindicated as he crossed the finish line on the final lap in the lead. It was all thanks to a strategy call by his crew he claims, “A caution came out at some point mid-race, Chase (Briscoe, who was Snider’s teammate at the time) & I took tires because we only got one set. I ended up beating him off pit road. So I restarted 5th, he was 6th. I ended up getting through all of the cars in front of us much faster than he did, and I took the lead and didn’t look back.” With his victory, Myatt became one of only a handful of drivers to win in their very first ARCA career start. “It was pretty cool to win my first ARCA start. I was shocked just because usually it took me a while to figure out how to get the most out of a race car. So that’s also one of my favorite wins.”

     Rounding out his first and only full-time ARCA season with four top-ten finishes, and a pole award at Michigan International Speedway, Myatt moved on to the big leagues the following year joining the NASCAR Camping World Truck series. Piloting the #51 Toyota Tundra for Kyle Busch Motorsports on a part-time basis, Myatt made his debut at Daytona, gathering his first truck series top ten in the process. In 2018 he switched teams, racing full time in the #13 for Thorsport Racing, replacing driver Cody Coughlin. With consistent runs at multiple tracks, he concluded his season with eight top-ten finishes, three top-five finishes, a ninth-place points finish, and a 2018 Rookie of the Year title. Despite not scoring a win, based on his consistency and his Rookie of the Year title, it seemed as though Myatt was poised to have another stellar year in the truck series. However, things took a turn of events that Myatt couldn’t have foreseen coming. 

     In 2019, Myatt’s position as a full-time driver at Thorsport transitioned to a part-time one. The new year also provided a number swap, as he now became the driver of the #27 for the team, his former ride now being piloted by Johnny Sauter. After his final race on his part-time schedule, Myatt still hungry to keep racing took a trip across seas to compete in the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series Elite 2 Division, driving the #48 Ford Mustang for Racing Engineering. “I had to go race in Europe in ‘19, not that it was bad by any stretch. I just thought we would have run another season in Trucks” Myatt expressed to me about the major shift in his career. Despite his initial wariness about the decision his trip on the other side of the world proved to be a swell one. Across a thirteen-race season, Snider would finish in the top ten in every race but two. Out of his eleven top-ten finishes, four of them were top-five finishes, resulting in a 6th place points finish. Despite not claiming a win, Myatt’s success proved he still had plenty of potential and a lot to give to a team. 

     Not too soon after his return from Europe, Myatt would return to the Truck series, again driving the #13 for Thorsport Racing at World Wide Technology Raceway, filling in for the suspended Johnny Sauter. His performance in that race resulted in a tenth-place finish. The remainder of Snider’s year was a quiet one, until in late November when it was announced he was signed on to a part-time contract driving for Richard Childress Racing in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. However, in January 2020, his schedule was increased to a total of 20 races, when he signed on to run with Ryan Sieg Racing as a part-time driver. After running the first eight races of the season,  he committed to a full-time schedule for 2020, contesting all but three races for Ryan Sieg Racing, Pocono, Martinsville, and Phoenix of which he ran for Richard Childress Racing. Despite the non-ideal situation of splitting his time amongst two different teams, the opportunity proved to be fruitful for the emerging driver, as he would go on to score six top-ten finishes, two top-five finishes, & round out his season with a top 20 points finish. Thanks to his results, he was signed on to race full time in the #2 TaxSlayer Chevy for Richard Childress Racing the following season. 

     The 2021 season started out with a bang for Snider, as he would score his first top ten of the season at Daytona International Speedway, and would follow it up just two weeks later with his very first NASCAR Xfinity Series win at Homestead-Miami Speedway. With his win, he managed to lock himself into the playoffs, however, he’d, unfortunately, be eliminated in the round of twelve, after a penalty on the restart set him back. Although Myatt was able to rebound and finish in eighth place, it still wasn’t enough to advance him to the next round. Despite his early exit from the playoffs, Snider’s 2021 season proved to be his most successful yet, maxing it out with 11 top-ten finishes, a win, and a ninth-place points finish. This, however, was not enough to keep him at Richard Childress Racing for 2022, as it was announced that Truck Series driver Sheldon Creed would be taking over the #2 car in the upcoming season. A few months later, Myatt was announced as the full-time driver of Richard Childress Racing’s satellite team, Jordan Anderson Racing, driving the #31 TaxSlayer Chevy, and he seems pretty confident in his chances of repeating success in the upcoming season. “That win at Homestead left me wanting more of it all. I’d love to be a contender as often as possible. So we’ll see. All big lofty stuff but… we have all the right pieces.” 

     When starting this piece on Myatt Snider, I was quickly blindsided realizing just how much I didn’t know about the man I’d labeled as my ‘favorite Xfinity Series driver’ for the past two years. And in an age when most famous figures couldn’t be bothered to make time for their fans, Myatt spotted my tweet about struggling on my piece about him and decided to provide me with the answers to any and all of my questions. This isn’t the first time Myatt has made time for his fans either, while just a month beforehand he offered me his time as well. At Martinsville Speedway, under a red flag condition, Myatt parked his car on the front stretch directly in front of where my boyfriend and I stood admiring. And even when strapped in a car, with a helmet on, no doubt a spotter and crew chief bickering in his ears, he still managed to take the time to spot my boyfriend and me on the other side of the fence and wave hello. “All I’ve ever wanted to do is just give a real product,” Myatt told me about his presence to the fans. And I can say with the utmost certainty, that Myatt Snider, just might be the nicest kid in town. 

Stay tuned for more in the new year from Gi on Myatt Snider and Jordan Anderson Racing in the Small Team Spotlight series!

Featured image credits to @heymartysnider on Twitter.

Published by Gianna Lashley - Nicholas

Gianna "Gi" Lashley - Nicholas is a 19-year-old writer from New Jersey. Her favorite drivers include Ryan Blaney, Myatt Snider, and Christian Eckes. You can find her on Twitter @basicallygi as well as @basicallygi23 on Instagram. She is a writer for Pit Box Press.

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